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Reality Check: Kloppenburg ad attacks opponents

Reality Check: Kloppenburg ad attacks opponents

MADISON, Wis. - In the race for a Wisconsin Supreme Court seat, ads are now touting the credentials of some candidates while attacking others.

An ad from Appeals Court Judge JoAnne Kloppenburg offers an introduction to her competitors.

"Rebecca Bradley, appointed by Scott Walker to three judgeships three times in three years," the ad says.

News 3 finds that it is true that the governor has appointed Bradley to the bench three times. He first appointed her in 2012 as a circuit court judge in Milwaukee County and she won re-election to that seat in 2013. He then appointed her to the District 1 Court of Appeals in May of 2015, and then to be a Wisconsin State Supreme Court Justice in October of 2015, following the death of Justice Patrick Crooks.

"She's backed to the hilt by right-wing special interests," the ad says, showing a citation for the claim from "news coverage."

News 3 finds this needs clarification.

The Kloppenburg campaign says it was citing a press release from One Wisconsin Now, a liberal group, that was posted online. The release raised concerns about the spending of a conservative group called the Wisconsin Alliance for Reform.

News 3 finds it is true that an ad running for Justice Rebecca Bradley was paid for by that group, which is currently run by former Republican operatives. The DC-based Brennan Center for Justice said the Wisconsin Alliance for Reform has spent nearly $400,000 statewide on the ad, which promotes Bradley as "fair and impartial."

"Joe Donald, he supported Rebecca Bradley, Walker's choice, twice," the ad claims.

News 3 finds this also needs clarification.

Donald, who is also running for Supreme Court, did support Bradley twice for two of her three judgeships. He endorsed her in 2013 to keep her trial court seat and served as a reference for the appeals court position. He told Wispolitics.com that he got "bamboozled" into thinking she only wanted that judgeship, but now believes it was only to position herself for the higher court.

If you have an idea for a Reality Check, send it to us at realitycheck@channel3000.com.

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