One Wisconsin Now Blog

David Prosser: The Partisans' Partisan in Six Acts

There's no denying former Republican Assembly Speaker and failed Republican Congressional nominee David Prosser is a long-time partisan cog in the Republican machine. But is he the most partisan state Supreme Court Justice Wisconsin has ever had?

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The answer would be a resounding "yes." And when looking at his record on the Supreme Court, it's abundantly clear that his hard core partisan credentials have guided him in serving the corporate money interests which fund the Republican, anti-working family message machine.

Consider these six items:

David Prosser was a Republican Assembly representative for 18 years, including serving as the Republican leader and speaker. As the Greater Wisconsin Committee showed at www.ProsserEqualsWalker.com, "As a legislator, Prosser voted to restrict the collective  bargaining rights of teachers. As a judge, Prosser sided against collective bargaining rights and against workers who were being deprived of their retirement benefits. Recently, Prosser told a Republican group that there was a "100 percent" chance that Walker's collective bargaining legislation would come before the court. Prosser said to the Republicans that he could not signal his likely position, but criticized his opponent for being supported by unions."

David Prosser served as a mentor for young Republican Representative Scott Walker and shepherded Walker into an unbending Republican partisan - and Walker and Prosser voted together 95 percent of the time when Walker served under Prosser's leadership in the disastrous 1995-96 legislative session. Prosser's campaign manager infamously also said he Prosser would serve as a "complement" to the Walker administration and its unprecedented attacks on workers' rights, education, health care, seniors' access to prescription drugs, recycling and support for local communities.

David Prosser has served the agenda of the Republican money machine at Wisconsin Manufacturers and Commerce including adopting their rule to allow justices to rule on cases in which they've spent money - such as the $5 million they spent to help Annette Ziegler and Mike Gableman get elected - and now WMC has put up ads to support Prosser in his current race.

David Prosser was a failed Republican candidate for U.S. Congress running in 1996 for the seat vacated by retiring fellow Republican Toby Roth. Prosser was a loyal Republican soldier ready to serve the agenda of Newt Gingrich and the attacks on the middle class.

David Prosser has been a featured guest of the Tea Party and his much-publicized appearance at the Koch brothers-financed Americans for Prosperity "Defending the Dream" summit in 2010 in which Republicans assembled to attack in public investment, access to affordable health care and strategize in advance of the 2010 Republican take-over of the Wisconsin state legislature and the election of Walker as governor.

David Prosser touts the endorsements of 69 Republican legislators who voted for the Republican assault on working families and who will help Walker pass his budget which includes the largest cuts to public education in Wisconsin's history -- $834 million in cuts to K-12 education alone; decimates technical colleges, privatizes the UW; includes $84 million in tax giveaways for big business and the wealthy, while at the same time raising taxes by $51 million on the poorest Wisconsinites. Walker's budget will raise SeniorCare prescription drug costs to pay off $1.3 million in donations to Walker and the Republican Governors Association; and even allow health care plans suddenly drop their coverage for contraception.

Quite a list.

But maybe I'm just being a "total bitch" with this analysis. I can only hope Prosser doesn't try and "destroy" me, too, by pointing out the obvious - he is the most unrelenting partisan who has ever been on Wisconsin's Supreme Court.

One Wisconsin Now has a long record of analysis and research on judicial ethics and integrity, including exposing Mike Gableman's pay-to-play contributions which helped get him his judicial appointment and Annette Ziegler's unprecedented scandal and conflicts of interest. You can support One Wisconsin Now's Judicial Ethics and Integrity effort by visiting here.