Liberal Judge and Wisconsin Supreme Court candidate Janet Protasiewicz debated Conservative Supreme Court candidate Dan Kelly on Tuesday.

The two clashed on a variety of issues including abortion, voter rights, and each other’s judicial records.

Many believe that the election will be high stakes to determine the political direction of Wisconsin in the runup to the 2024 Presidential election, and because Protasiewicz winning would flip the court’s narrow 4-3 conservative majority, which could affect issues such as election integrity and future issues concerning lockdowns.

Outside groups have spent millions of dollars in the election, including groups funded and backed by liberal billionaire George Soros.

A Liberal Majority on the Wisconsin Supreme Court could result in voter ID laws in the state being struck down and the court rejecting Wisconsin’s electoral map in favor of one more skewed towards Democrats.

At one point in the debate, Kelly referred to Protasiewicz’ sentencing record, mentioning that she failed to give a child rapist any jail time during her tenure as a Judge.

Protasiewicz seemed unable to recall the specific case that Kelly was referencing, but defended her sentencing record, at one point going so far as to blame rape victims for their reluctance to testify.


The Center Square Reports

Protasiewicz’s campaign and the groups that support her have spent the most in the race.

Kelly acknowledged the spending gap, but said the high price and deluge of ads is part of the electoral process.

There was some back-and-forth over Protasiewicz’s sentences during her time on the court, including a rape sentence that Kelly focused on.

“This is in the sentencing transcript,” Kelly said. “After the victim had testified that she couldn’t work anymore, how she suffered every day, after her boyfriend had abandoned her as ‘damaged goods.’ You looked at [the defendant] and said you saw ‘a good man in him,’ and then you said you didn’t think he was a danger to society.”

Protasiewicz countered that that quote must have been taken out of context.

“That certainly doesn’t sound like anything I would do,” Protasiewicz said. “I have told you that I work very, very hard to keep our communities safe. And guess what, I also do see some good in the defendants and the accused who come before our courts.”

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