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Wisconsin Supreme Court hopeful defends views on gay rights

MILWAUKEE (AP) — A conservative candidate for Wisconsin Supreme Court whose views on gay rights have come under scrutiny said Wednesday the criticism he's received is an unfair attack on his faith.

State Appeals Court Judge Brian Hagedorn blamed his opponents for making his personal beliefs part of his candidacy and insisted that he would be an impartial justice. Hagedorn is an evangelical Christian who helped start a private school where students can be expelled for being gay.

"The articles are attacking a statement of faith," Hagedorn said, answering questions at the Milwaukee Press Club. He was referring to coverage about his private school and a personal blog he kept more than a decade ago, where he once opined that a U.S. Supreme Court decision striking down a Texas anti-sodomy law could lead to the legalization of bestiality.

"Everyone should be treated with dignity and respect. That's the way I've conducted myself, that's the way I've always conducted myself," Hagedorn said, insisting that he doesn't allow his personal beliefs to influence his judicial work. "What we have here are people who I think want me to sign on to a moral and religious code of themselves. And if I don't sign on to it they're saying I am not fit for public office."

Hagedorn is running against state Appeals Court Judge Lisa Neubauer, who is backed by liberals. The April 2 contest gives liberals a chance to control the Supreme Court if they win this race and another seat up for election next year. Conservatives currently control the court 4-3.

The court could face big decisions on several partisan issues in the coming years, including on the next round of redistricting that follows the 2020 Census, lawsuits challenging the massive Foxconn Technology Group project backed by President Donald Trump, and attempts to undo laws that Republicans passed during a recent lame-duck session to weaken the incoming Democratic governor before he took office.

The race has drawn the attention of former U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder, who announced Monday that his National Democratic Redistricting Committee will spend $350,000 to help Neubauer.

Also on Wednesday, the liberal Greater Wisconsin Committee launched an attack ad against Hagedorn that it said was running on broadcast and cable channels as well as digitally. The spot says Hagedorn's past comments and actions show that he can't be trusted to be fair. The group last month reported spending $10,000 on a digital ad, but how much it was spending on the latest effort was not immediately disclosed.

Hagedorn previously argued that the U.S. Constitution gives deference to the states on whether to allow prayer in schools and that nothing in the Constitution bars a state from declaring its own official religion. But he reversed course in an email to the Journal Sentinel Tuesday, saying that "under current doctrine, it is clear no state may establish their own religion."

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Rose 6 days ago
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SHERNI 7 days ago
What else can I say about him, today am very grateful to him as I am finally cured of herpes disease that I have been eating me up for over a year and 6 months.After searching for different means to get my self cure but nothing seems to work out,Behold today i can boldly stand and testify to the world at large that with the help of an herbal medicine,I have found myself back to my feet and healthy again in just after few days that i got IN contact with a GOD sent man,through help on a blog which talk about herpes cure,how she was cured through the herbal medicine too which was sent to her from doctor Dr Adeola.So i decided to give this great man a try by contacting him via his email and mobile no,explained to him what my problems his and he told me all would be fine and well by the time he his done with is own work that i just have to believe in him which i did ,low and behold,today i am very happy as it was just all like a magic that is why i have come here to testify to the world at large and also to share my experience because I know there are many people out there who are also in searching for cure to one disease or the other,you can as well get Dr Adeola the great now for herbal medicine help through his contact address on dradeolaherbalhome@gmail.com also on mobile wha'sapp no +2349027752454 as i fully believe he is able and capable also getting rid of disease like
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ElninhoCindy 7 days ago
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