I must say, AP reporter Scott Bauer has gotten worse and worse. He doesn’t even attempt to write an unbiased story. Check out the overtly loaded language. But as for the story itself, good.
MADISON, Wis. (AP) — The conservative-controlled Wisconsin Supreme Court on Thursday upheld Republican-authored lame-duck laws that stripped power from the incoming Democratic attorney general just before he took office in 2019.
The justices rejected arguments that the laws were unconstitutional, handing another win to Republicans who have scored multiple high-profile victories before the court in recent years.
The 5-2 ruling marks the second time that the court has upheld the lame-duck laws passed in December 2018, just weeks before Gov. Tony Evers and Attorney General Josh Kaul, both Democrats, took office. The actions in Wisconsin mirrored Republican moves after losing control of the governors’ offices in Michigan in November 2018 and in North Carolina in 2016. Democrats decried the tactics as brazen attempts to hold onto power after losing elections.
Thursday’s ruling involved a case filed by a coalition of labor unions led by the State Employees International Union. The coalition argued that the laws give the Legislature power over the attorney general’s office and that this violates the separation of powers doctrine in the state constitution.
The laws prohibit Evers from ordering Kaul to withdraw from lawsuits, let legislators intervene in lawsuits using their own attorneys rather than Kaul’s state Department of Justice lawyers, and force Kaul to get permission from the Legislature’s Republican-controlled budget committee before settling lawsuits.
Republicans designed the laws to prohibit Evers from pulling Wisconsin out of a multistate lawsuit challenging the Affordable Care Act, also known as Obamacare, and to ensure that they have a say in court if Kaul chooses not to defend GOP-authored laws.