A federal judge has ruled against the Wisconsin Judicial Commission in a case that will now let judicial candidates express opinions on issues during their campaigns.
The case was filed by Wisconsin Right to Life. Executive Director Barbara Lyons hopes candidates will now feel better about answering their questionnaire asking for their views on things like abortion and assisted suicide.
Until Tuesday's ruling, the state Judicial Commission said it would be inappropriate for potential judges to state personal opinions on issues that might come up in future cases. They would have to recuse themselves in such cases if elected.
The federal court ruling does say no promises or commitments can be made by candidates and that's OK with Right to Life. Lyons says they never wanted that, just views on general topics that would provide voters with more information.
There's been no word on whether the state plans an appeal but Lyons points out there are similar cases that already have US Supreme Court backing.