UPDATE: Supreme Court cites free speech in ending probe - WAOW - Newsline 9, Wausau News, Weather, Sports

UPDATE: Supreme Court cites free speech in ending probe

Posted:

MADISON, Wis. (AP) -- The latest on the Wisconsin Supreme Court's expected decision Thursday in a case involving Republican Gov. Scott Walker's 2012 recall campaign:

9:15 a.m.
   
Wisconsin Supreme Court justices cited free speech in effectively tossing out the secret investigation into whether Republican Gov. Scott Walker's campaign illegally coordinated with conservative groups in winning his 2012 recall election.
   
The high court ruled Thursday state election law is overbroad and vague in defining what amounts to "political purposes."
   
Justice Shirley Abrahamson, one of two liberals on the seven-member court, sharply disagrees and accuses the majority of a faulty interpretation of state law. Abrahamson says the opinion delivers a significant blow to Wisconsin's campaign finance law.
   
The court's action is a major victory for Walker as he pursues the presidency, though one expert says prosecutors could appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court. No one has been charged in the John Doe probe, Wisconsin's version of a grand jury investigation.
   
7:45 a.m.
   
The Wisconsin Supreme Court has handed Republican presidential hopeful Scott Walker a major victory by ending an investigation into whether the governor's 2012 recall campaign coordinated illegally with conservative groups.
   
No one had been charged in the investigation, but questions about the probe have dogged Walker for months. The court's action Thursday eliminates a legal headache for Walker, who is in his first week campaigning since declaring the White House bid.
   
The case revolves around political activity by Wisconsin Club for Growth and other conservative groups during the 2012 recall election, which was spurred by Democratic anger over Walker's law that effectively ended collective bargaining for most public workers.
   
Prosecutors in Milwaukee accused Walker's campaign and the groups of violating state law by coordinating their efforts. The groups denied wrongdoing.
   ------
   
12:01 a.m.
   
The Wisconsin Supreme Court is set to announce whether investigators can resume a wide-ranging and secret probe into alleged election law violations during the Republican Gov. Scott Walker's 2012 recall campaign.
   
Questions about the investigation have dogged Walker for months. He's in the first week of campaigning since announcing a 2016 bid for president.
   
At issue is whether Walker's 2012 recall campaign and several conservative groups illegally coordinated their activities. The recall effort was spurred by Democratic anger over Walker's successful drive to effectively end collective bargaining for most public workers.
   
Walker and the groups have denied any wrongdoing and called the probe a violation of their free-speech rights.
   
No one has been charged in the John Doe probe, Wisconsin's version of a grand jury investigation.

Powered by Frankly