New GOP ad in Wisconsin Supreme Court race hits liberal judge as soft on crime

Wisconsin Supreme Court
Wisconsin Supreme Court candidates Republican-backed Dan Kelly and Democratic-supported Janet Protasiewicz participate in a debate Tuesday, March 21, 2023, in Madison, Wis. Morry Gash/AP

New GOP ad in Wisconsin Supreme Court race hits liberal judge as soft on crime

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Attack ads are heating up the airwaves in Wisconsin as millions of dollars are being poured into the influence state’s high-stakes Supreme Court race.

With just eight days to go, neither side is pulling any punches.


Former Justice Daniel Kelly and his conservative allies launched a new ad on Monday taking aim at liberal Judge Janet Protasiewicz’s record on crime.

In it, three Wisconsin sheriffs faulted Protasiewicz for failing to lock up criminals.

“Our officers risk their lives to protect your families, but law enforcement’s hands are tied when judges like Janet Protasiewicz refuse to hold dangerous criminals accountable,” Sheriffs Wes Revels, Eric Severson, and Dale Schmidt said in the ad, drawing attention to the case of Quantrell Bounds, a man who assaulted and raped a 13-year-old girl, recorded, and posted the incident online. Protasiewicz sentenced Bounds to five years and nine months behind bars but suspended the jail time and gave him probation.

Protasiewicz has also been taken to task for her “soft of crime” stance by multiple special interest groups, including the state’s largest business association and a super PAC backed by billionaire Richard Uihlein.

Specifically, Protasiewicz is being called out for suspending the prison sentence of Matthew Neumann, a convicted domestic abuser with a long criminal record who later went on to kill two of his cleaning company employees and burn their bodies on a hunting property.

Protasiewicz has defended her record and said the Bounds and Neumann cases were cherry-picked to make her look weak.


Wisconsin voters began casting their in-person early voting ballots in the Supreme Court race on March 21. The winner of the April 4 contest will likely tip the state’s highest court and deliver tiebreaking votes on abortion, partisan gerrymandering, and election law.

More than $31 million has been spent on the race, most coming from out-of-state groups.

© 2023 Washington Examiner

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