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In ‘Petty’ Move, Liberal Justices Erase Conservative’s Name From State Law Library

david prosser
David Prosser

The liberal partisans on the Wisconsin Supreme Court are erasing former conservative Justice David Prosser’s name from the state Law Library, a move that conservative Justice Rebecca Bradley labeled a “petty and vindictive maneuver.”

They are replacing his name with the name of Lavinia Goodell, “Wisconsin’s first female lawyer,” according to a press release from the Court.

Bradley reacted to the move on X, writing, “In another petty and vindictive maneuver, the progressive majority of the Wisconsin Supreme Court flexes its political power to remove Justice David Prosser’s name from the State Law Library.”

She added, “In honor of Justice Prosser’s decades of service to the people of Wisconsin in all three branches of government, the court named the State Law library after him after 18 years of service on the Wisconsin Supreme Court.”

The Supreme Court announced the move in the press release, writing, “The Wisconsin Supreme Court announced today that the State Law Library will be named in honor of Lavinia Goodell, the first woman lawyer in Wisconsin. The announcement comes on the heels of Monday’s Wisconsin Women Lawyers Day. A celebration Monday at the Rock County Courthouse recognized the lasting impact that Lavinia Goodell and women across the state have had on the legal profession in the past 150 years.” All of the liberal justices are women. They are Janet Protasiewicz, Ann Walsh Bradley, Rebecca Dallet, and Jill Karofsky.

Bradley continue, “As Wisconsin’s first female lawyer, Lavinia Goodell was a trailblazer. The court could have honored her achievements in a multitude of ways but instead the majority—again without the input or consent of their colleagues—chose to insult Justice Prosser.”

The website for the Wisconsin Law Library still declares it the “David T. Prosser Jr. State Law Library.”

Since taking over the court’s majority after millions of dollars in spending by the State Democratic Party, the liberals on the court have targeted their political opponents, ousting the respected state court director (a Republican) and stripping some powers from the conservative Chief Justice, Annette Ziegler. Ziegler called the maneuver to strip her powers nothing “short of a coup” and “lawless bullying.”

In 2016, then Supreme Court Chief Justice Pat Roggensack, a conservative, announced that the law library would be named after Prosser “in light of Prosser’s upcoming retirement and many years of service.”

Prosser served on the court for 18 years. He was first appointed to the court by Republican Gov. Tommy Thompson in 1998 and was re-elected twice, according to his court bio.

A Supreme Court press release at the time the law library was named for Prosser says, “In all, Prosser spent more than 40 years in public service, including experience in all three branches of state government. He retired July 31, after 18 years on the Supreme Court. Earlier in his career, he served as a tax appeals commissioner, legislative leader, and a prosecutor.”

Prosser has long been the receptacle of liberal justices’ wrath. Liberal Justice Ann Walsh Bradley, who is still on the court, once accused him of choking her, a claim he adamantly denied. However, a special prosecutor reviewed the accusations and determined there was no basis for criminal charges, noting that justices opinions on the incident varied, according to NBC News.

“I believe a complete review of the report suggests there is a difference of opinion. There are a variety of statements about what occurred … the totality of what did happen does not support criminal charges against either Justice Bradley or Justice Prosser,” Sauk County DA Patricia Barrett, the special prosecutor, said.

“Naming the State Law Library in Lavinia Goodell’s honor is an opportunity to recognize her legacy and inspire the next generation of women in Wisconsin,” said Ann Walsh Bradley in the press release, which does not mention Prosser’s name.

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