Weather Forecast


Abrahamson says no to returning lawyers campaign cash despite upcoming malpractice trial

State Supreme Court Chief Justice Shirley Abrahamson

Wisconsin's chief justice says she will not return more than $11,000 in campaign donations from lawyers who will argue a medical malpractice in her court next month.

At a debate in Madison Tuesday, Supreme Court challenger Randy Koschnick told Shirley Abrahamson to either give back the money or withdraw from the case.

But Abrahamson said none of the parties involved have asked her to pull out.

Recent reports said Abrahamson's camp raised $30,000 from lawyers with cases pending before the state's highest court.

Koschnick, a Jefferson County circuit judge, said those donors expect something in return.

And if he knew he took money from someone in a case, he'd do the impartial thing and withdraw.

But Abrahamson said the key is to be beholden to everyone in the state and not any single group and she has raised funds from 5,000 contributors.

Abrahamson, who has spent 32 years on the state's highest court, has raised over a million dollars for her campaign. She says the average gift is around $250.