The Wisconsin REALTORS® Association has endorsed incumbent Justice Patience Roggensack for a full 10-year term in the Wisconsin Supreme Court election to be held on April 2, 2013.
Prior to her election to the Supreme Court in 2003, Roggensack was a Wisconsin Court of Appeals judge and litigator in a private firm. Justice Roggensack’s record clearly illustrates her support for issues important to the real estate industry and the WRA. She has demonstrated a solid understanding of private property rights in cases involving the environment, eminent domain, landlord/tenant issues, appraisals, assessments, easements, condemnations, real estate commissions, condominiums, zoning ordinances and contracts.
The WRA’s Political Strategy Group, RPAC trustees and board of directors all voted unanimously to support Justice Roggensack.
The unanimous endorsement of Roggensack is based on five significant reasons:
Record on cases impacting the real estate industry: Since 2003, Justice Roggensack decided 46 cases involving issues important to the WRA, and she ruled in a manner beneficial to the real estate industry or property owners in 32 of those cases. Roggensack’s overall record for support of property owners: 69.5 percent.
Solid on WRA cases: The WRA filed party or amicus briefs in 22 cases decided by Justice Roggensack during her 10 years on the Supreme Court. Roggensack ruled with the WRA, in whole or in part, in 17 of those 22 cases. Roggensack’s record on WRA amicus briefs: 77 percent.
Support for WRA position on unauthorized practice of law: Under the terms of a State Bar of Wisconsin proposal (“petition”), real estate licensees would have lost the ability to draft forms. This petition would have taken away a large portion of the role of a real estate licensee in a real estate transaction. Justice Roggensack ruled in the WRA’s favor. As noted by WRA attorneys Cori Lamont and at the time Kevin King, “If this event (petition) did occur, clearly your day, your career, your life would be very different.”
Support of WRA motion for new rules on judicial recusal: In response to a judge recusing herself in a case involving the WRA because the WRA supported her campaign, the WRA filed a motion with the Supreme Court asking it to amend its internal rules to say that endorsement and political support alone does not require a judge to recuse him/herself from a case. Justice Roggensack took a leadership role in a 4-3 vote to adopt the WRA’s motion on judicial recusal. As a result, the WRA and other organizations will continue to exercise constitutional rights to support and endorse judicial candidates without fear that the judges will be required to recuse themselves from hearing a case.
Conservative stance on real estate-related cases: Generally, Justice Roggensack is a strict constructionist on statutes, upholds contracts where possible, and sides with property owners in cases dealing with private property rights.
Vote February 19 and April 2
Two challengers have entered the race against Justice Roggensack in the February 19 primary election: Ed Fallone, a Marquette University law professor, and Vince Megna, a lemon law attorney.
Surviving the February 19 primary is essential to Justice Roggensack’s advancement to the April 2 general election. The WRA will conduct a “Get Out the Vote” effort prior to both elections. Mark your calendars and vote on February 19 and April 2!
Based on Justice Roggensack’s experience and track record on cases important to the real estate industry, property owners and the WRA, we urge you to support Roggensack in the upcoming Wisconsin Supreme Court race.
Joe Murray is Director of Political and Governmental Affairs for the WRA.