Wisconsin Public Radio

Ron Johnson Calls for Justice Protasiewicz to Recuse

Joins other Republicans calling for Supreme Count member to recuse on redistricting case.

By , Wisconsin Public Radio - Aug 26th, 2023 04:11 pm
Ron Johnson. Photo by Gage Skidmore from Peoria, AZ, United States of America / Attribution-ShareAlike 2.0 Generic (CC BY-SA 2.0) https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0/deed.en

Ron Johnson. Photo by Gage Skidmore from Peoria, AZ, United States of America / Attribution-ShareAlike 2.0 Generic (CC BY-SA 2.0) https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0/deed.en

U.S. Sen. Ron Johnson is joining a chorus of Wisconsin Republicans in urging a state Supreme Court justice to recuse herself from certain cases.

Earlier this week, state Republican lawmakers filed motions in the state’s highest court asking to exclude liberal Justice Janet Protasiewicz from a pair of lawsuits over Wisconsin’s electoral districts.

They cited nearly $10 million to donations from the Democratic Party of Wisconsin to her election bid. They also argue she pre-judged the issue when, during her campaign, she repeatedly referred to Wisconsin’s legislative maps as “rigged.”

Speaking in Madison Friday, Johnson said he hopes Protasiewicz steps down from redistricting cases voluntarily.

“Hopefully she’ll do the right thing,” the Republican senator said, following a roundtable at the Urban League of Greater Madison about reducing barriers for incarcerated people who are reentering society. “She’s obviously biased in this case, and she should not be judging on it.”

Johnson stopped short of calling on state lawmakers to pursue impeachment proceedings against Protasiewicz.

As of this spring, state Republicans hold the Assembly majority and the Senate supermajority, which would be theoretically necessary to impeach and remove a public official. But any replacement would be appointed by Democratic Gov. Tony Evers.

Protasiewicz took office Aug. 1 after beating Republican-backed former Justice Dan Kelly by 11 percentage points. She declined to comment on Johnson’s remarks Friday.

In an interview with Wisconsin Public Radio earlier this month, Senate Minority Leader Melissa Agard, D-Madison, defended Protasiewicz’s ability to weigh redistricting cases fairly. She said Protasiewicz was simply stating “known facts” when she referred to Wisconsin’s legislative districts as gerrymandered.

During her campaign, Protasiewicz said she’d likely recuse herself from cases directly involving the Democratic Party of Wisconsin. But she said she planned to weigh in on cases involving redistricting and abortion. Protasiewicz made support for abortion rights a centerpiece of her campaign amid an ongoing lawsuit from Wisconsin’s Democratic attorney general which seeks to stop elective abortions from being criminalized under a 19th century law. It’s likely that case will eventually make its way to the state’s Supreme Court.

Listen to the WPR report here.

Ron Johnson joins Republicans in calling for Justice Protasiewicz to step down from certain cases was originally published by Wisconsin Public Radio.

7 thoughts on “Ron Johnson Calls for Justice Protasiewicz to Recuse”

  1. BigRed81 says:

    Spoken by someone who has regularly broken the Oath of Office.

  2. kaygeeret says:

    It is kind of laughable that he would have the gall to criticize someone else for speaking their mind.

    After all, we are subjected to his mindless comments all the time.

  3. JMcD says:

    You’re funny, RoJo

  4. Dean Schultz says:

    Did he suggest this recusal before or after he attempted to install fake electors?

  5. MrTea says:

    What a joke! Ron Johnson a liar calling out others is just laughable. Tell us about your role with Wisconsin state fake electors Ron and your role in that treasonous scheme? What Ron you do not have a comment gee that is a surprise.

    Many of us here in Wisconsin hope Jack Smith indicts you Ron that would be a very good day!.

  6. Mingus says:

    Ron Johnson should resign for being such an embarrassment to the State of Wisconsin.

  7. CraigR says:

    Since Ron is so willing to give his opinion, I’d like for him to publicly explain how these maps are fair.
    When you create such unbalanced districts, you invite extremism on both sides. We are better served when our representatives have to acknowledge a differing viewpoint and moderate their actions instead of voting as a party block on everything.

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