, ,

Wisconsin Supreme Court Justice Crooks Won’t Seek Third Term

Crooks Is Perceived As Swing Vote On Court

Royalbroil (CC-BY-SA)

Wisconsin Supreme Court Justice N. Patrick Crooks announced Wednesday that he won’t seek a third 10-year term. Instead, he’s stepping down after having served almost 40 years as a judge — 19 of them on the state’s high court.

During his tenure on the bench, Crooks has been considered a swing vote, sometimes joining the four-justice conservative majority and at other times siding with the two-justice liberal minority.

Crooks said he hopes whoever replaces him will be committed to being both impartial and nonpartisan: “Somebody who will have support from both sides of the political aisle,” he said.

Stay informed on the latest news

Sign up for WPR’s email newsletter.

This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

He added: “That’s what you hope for — somebody that’s going to come and do a good job representing all the people.”

Former Supreme Court Justice Janine Geske agreed, adding that she hopes the winner will advocate more collegiality among the justices.

“It gives a new opportunity for the court to sort of reorganize and re-look at itself and hopefully get on a better road than it’s been in,” she said.

A three-way race is shaping up to fill Crook’s seat. Appeals court Judge JoAnne Kloppenberg and Milwaukee County Circuit Court Judge Joe Donald have been raising money for several months, and just this week, appeals court Judge Rebecca Bradley also registered to run. A February primary will narrow the race to two candidates, who will face off in an April election.

Editor’s Note: This article was originally an Associated Press story. It has since been replaced with reporting by Wisconsin Public Radio.