Progressive Judge Wins Big in Wisconsin Special Election

Rebecca Dallet and Michael Screnock

In another tweet, Walker added, "Big government special interests flooded Wisconsin with distorted facts & misinformation".

Screnock, a Sauk County judge appointed and endorsed by Republican Gov. Scott Walker, had the backing of the National Rifle Association and the Wisconsin Republican Party.

The 48-year-old Dallet won the seat being vacated by Justice Michael Gableman, a key member of the court's conservative majority.

"After the results were announced Walker sent out several tweets, criticizing Democrats and warning Republicans of the risk of a "#BlueWave".

Dallet, the candidate favored by liberals and Democrats, defeated Screnock, supported by conservatives and Republicans, to win a 10 year term on the court. Walker is seeking a third term in November.

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Democrats were looking to build momentum in Tuesday's Supreme Court race, with the hope that it will carry the party into November, when midterm elections take place and when Walker himself is up for reelection.

Dallet's victory narrows conservative control of the court from 5-2 to 4-3.

Walker warned that wins by Democrats could jeopardize the state's low unemployment rate, balanced budgets and $8 billion in tax cuts. (It also means six of the seven Justices are women). "People are exhausted of special interests ruling and wanted to speak up".

In addition to this, Martha Laning, Wisconsin Democratic Party Chairwoman, issued a warning to Walker and called it a "huge loss" for him as his "endorsement, philosophy and politics were on the ballot". The court has been a reliable ally of Walker and Republicans who have controlled the governor's office and Legislature since 2011. In Outagamie County, Dallet bested Screnock by 12 percentage points while Walker won that county in 2014 by 20 percentage points.

Doug Clawson, 58, a communications professional who cast his ballot at a Madison public library, said, "People are pretty motivated on the left, from what I can see". She will be sworn in as Justice on August 1. That's why Republicans worked so hard to prop up an unqualified candidate who is best known for defending Walker's efforts to gerrymander legislative districts and strip collective bargaining rights from working people.

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