State Bar President Tom Basting has apparently decided that he wants to push the train wreck that is the Wisconsin Judicial Campaign Integrity Committee down the track. A press release notes that Michael Gableman has signed his own "clean campaign" pledge. The WJIC, although it claims not to know what the Gableman pledge says (wouldn't a few mouse clicks have remedied that?), promises to hold him to it.
Of course, the self assumed mantle of arbiter of campaign etiquette (enhanced by the imprimatur of a state bar that apparently never authorized Basting's project)was precisely the reason not to sign WJCIC's campaign pledge. This group has no more authority or status than anyone else who might choose to comment on the supreme court race. After last week's e-mail fiasco, it has a lot less credibility
The press release also calls on Gableman to join Justice Butler in renouncing third party advertising. Perhaps he will, but it is, at best, easy virtue. These third parties have reasons of their own to speak on the race and they are not going to stop.
And is it even virtue? Do I want my candidates for Supreme Court to renounce the exercise of first amendment rights?