Government and Political News: Judicial Commission to decide Friday if there'll be any penalities for judges who signed the Walker petitionWisconsin News
-- Wisconsin’s Judicial Commission is expected to decide Friday whether to investigate or act against 29 circuit judges who signed the Walker recall petitions.
Wisconsin’s Judicial Commission is expected to decide Friday whether to investigate or act against 29 circuit judges who signed the Walker recall petitions. But we may never know everything about what the panel decides. Commission director Jim Alexander tells Gannett’s 10 Wisconsin daily newspapers it can release information in some cases – but there’s no obligation to do so. Alexander has said the Judicial Commission has received a dozen requests to investigate Dane County Circuit Judge David Flanagan. It was learned that he had signed the petition for a recall election against the Republican Walker, after he issued a temporary injunction that halted Wisconsin’s photo I-D requirement for voting that Walker had approved. Gannett then used a tea party’s searchable database to identify the 29 judges who signed the petitions. Some judges defended their actions, saying they were exercising a constitutional right that’s not specifically addressed by the state’s judicial ethics code. But the conservative Landmark Legal Foundation – which filed one of the complaints – called it “inherent political activity.”
Democrats jumped on yesterday’s federal report which said Wisconsin was the only state to have statistically significant job losses in the past year. But Republican Governor Scott Walker’s administration downplayed the numbers, and said that the jobless rate is the lowest since the Great Recession began in earnest in 2008. The U-S Bureau of Labor Statistics said the Badger State lost almost 24-thousand jobs during the year ending in March. Three-of-every-four were government jobs, but the report also said Wisconsin lost the largest number of private sector jobs with 61-hundred. The two leading Democrats in the Walker recall election said the data backs up what they’ve been saying for awhile. Tom Barrett called the Walker jobs record a “total failure” and quote, “This is what happens when you pursue ideology instead of focusing on jobs.” Democrat Kathleen Falk said quote, “Every report card that comes in for Governor Walker shows that he’s failing Wisconsin.” But Workforce Development Secretary, Reggie Newson, said the numbers would improve in the near future. And he pointed to a declining jobless rate, plus business surveys that project more hiring this year. The government also said Wisconsin was among 18 states that had significant drops in their jobless rates over the last year. Wisconsin’s rate fell eight-tenths-of-a-point during that time, to six-point-eight percent. Walker has made the jobless rate a key message in his recall campaign. But Barrett’s camp said the governor promised to create a quarter-million private sector jobs in his first four-year term. Around six-thousand net jobs have been created since Walker took office.
U-S Senate candidate Eric Hovde told the Milwaukee Press Club yesterday that he’s no fan of Wall Street – even though the hedge fund manager made his fortune in asset management and community banks. Hovde named names, saying executives of the nation’s biggest banks and investment houses gambled with people’s money – broke securities laws – and were never held accountable. Hovde blamed the Obama White House and Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner for that. The Madison area candidate said the administration is quote, “littered with Wall Street executives,” and that’s why those people are not being prosecuted. Hovde said there are federal regulations that could have addressed the financial services’ collapse in late 2008. But he said the government never adhered to them, and officials created favors and benefits to the financial firms instead. Hovde is one of five Republicans running in the August 14th primary for the U-S Senate seat being given up by Democrat Herb Kohl. Hovde has spent about one-and-a-half million dollars of his own money to build up his name recognition against opponents like former Governor Tommy Thompson, ex-Congressman Mark Neumann, and state Assembly Speaker Jeff Fitzgerald.