'A bad precedent': Wisconsin's lame-duck battle
MILWAUKEE (CBS 58) -- The legal battle continues over the GOPs lame duck session laws.
While a number of lawsuits are working their way through court to block laws passed by Republicans last year, a judge already ruled them unconstitutional.
According to Dane County Circuit Judge Richard Niess, the laws are illegal because state lawmakers met at times not allowed by the constitution.
The laws also stripped powers from Gov. Tony Evers and Attorney General Josh Kaul.
University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee political science professor Mordecai Lee said what's happening at the Capitol is unfortunate. "There's a fight going on that's partly about partisanship, each party wanted to get an advantage."
The ruling also means 82 appointments made by former Gov. Scott Walker before leaving office, are now vacant.
But Republican leaders plan to appeal.
Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald released the following statement:
“We absolutely believe that these nominees were nominated and confirmed legally and will continue to serve in those positions once the constitutionality of the extraordinary session is upheld. The governor’s irresponsible action of pulling these appointments minutes after the Court of Appeals set an emergency Monday deadline for the governor’s response to the Legislature’s stay motion shows a disrespect for the law and for the courts.”
Lee said the battle is a bad precedent.
"What would we say if the Green Bay Packers when they're on offense at Lambeau Field only have to do 40-yards, but their opponents have to do 60-yards. We'd say 'Yay for the Green Bay Packers!' But what if that same thing happened if they played the Vikings in Minneapolis, that the Vikings would have a built in advantage. We wouldn't want that," he said.
Meantime, Kaul plans to file a motion to remove Wisconsin from a list of states looking to repeal Obamacare.
Monday, the first hearing in one of the lawsuits to block the laws will be held in Madison.