Wisconsin’s Assembly Speaker Robin Vos (GQP) says legislative Republicans could consider impeachment proceedings targeting the newest Wisconsin Supreme Court Justice Janet Protasiewicz, if she doesn’t recuse herself from lawsuits challenging the state’s legislative maps.
In response, Senate Minority Leader Melissa Agard said in part, “Legislative Republicans will jump over any hurdle to usurp the will of the majority. … Considering impeachment mere weeks after Justice Protasiewicz has been sworn-in is utterly absurd.”
Republicans hold the majority in the Assembly, as well as a super majority in the state Senate, giving them the numbers to impeach and remove Protasiewicz.
Protasiewicz took office Aug. 1 after beating Republican-backed former Justice Dan Kelly by 11 percentage points, making abortion-rights a centerpiece of her campaign. She also called the state’s legislative maps “rigged.”
Her election tilted the Wisconsin Supreme Court to liberal majority.
US Sen Ron Johnson has also weighed in, urging Protosiewicz to recuse herself from redistricting cases.
It’s not black and white how effective an impeachment would be.
Gov. Tony Evers, a Democrat, could simply reappoint her, or another person, to the position, allowing the left to maintain their majority.
However, the state Constitution says this on the matter: “No judicial officer shall exercise his office, after he shall have been impeached, until his acquittal.”
Professor at University of Wisconsin Ed Miller says it’s possible that the GOP could impeach Protasiewicz in the state Assembly, but take no action in the state Senate, to keep her in legal limbo, triggering unprecedented gamesmanship.
Any solutions would likely be pending in court, which could push redistricting priorities to 2026.