Justice Rebecca Bradley defeated challenger Joanne Kloppenburg at the polls Tuesday. With the victory, Bradley secured a 10-year term on the state's highest court.
Currently, Bradley is serving out the end of Patrick Crooks' term. He died last fall, and Gov. Scott Walker named Bradley to the post. Walker also appointed Bradley to two other judgeships since 2012, in Milwaukee County circuit court and the court of appeals.
Bradley's ties to Walker had some questioning whether she could be an independent jurist. At her victory party, Bradley shot down such concerns.
"All of the voters in Wisconsin who supported Judge Kloppenburg, please know that I am your justice too. Everything I said on the campaign trail I mean sincerely. I will always follow the law, regardless of how I feel about it or the outcome in the case," Bradley said.
Nick Nowak is a Bradley supporter from Franklin. At the party, he said he believes Bradley means what she says.
"She's not someone who would legislate from the bench...we have legislators who are elected by people and paid to make the laws and she's going to be a justice who will interpret those laws and make sure they're translated right, instead of trying to change what the Legislature decided and make it into law on their own, from the bench," Nowak said.
To win the race, Bradley had to overcome criticism regarding some writing that she did in 1992, when she was a student at Marquette University. At the time, Bradley made disparaging remarks about gay people, victims of date rape, and people with AIDS.