(The Center Square) – The head of Wisconsin’s Elections Commission may have to sit for an interview with the state’s special elections investigator after all.
A Dane County judge on Monday ruled former Wisconsin Supreme Court Justice Mike Gableman’s subpoena for Elections Commission Administrator Meagan Wolfe can stand.
The judge first ruled that Wolfe is within her power to sue Gableman to stop the subpoenas.
“If Wolfe does not have standing to assert a claim that the [Gableman’s] subpoenas violate the constitution, who does?” the judge wrote in their decision. “Wolfe as the administrator of the WEC is the logical individual to bring this constitutional challenge to the subpoenas, and no one outside the WEC would have an equivalent stake in the issue. Adopting Defendants’ position would give unfettered power to the legislature, even when there are constitutional implications.”
Wolfe, along with Democrats at the Wisconsin Capitol say Gableman is abusing the power that the legislature gave him by continuing to ask questions about the lead-up to the 2020 vote.
But while the judge said Wolfe has the legal standing to challenge the subpoena, the judge said Wolfe did not make the case that Gableman’s request to sit for an official deposition is too much.
“[Wolfe] addressed the merits of the case, but did not address irreparable harm,” the judge wrote. “In their reply brief, [Wolfe and her lawyers] did not address irreparable harm, inadequate remedy at law, or preservation of the status quo. Plaintiffs were given the opportunity to supplement their submission before the December 23, 2021 hearing in this matter, and provided no further evidence or testimony at the hearing.”
But the judge did leave the door open for Wolfe, and Wisconsin Attorney General Josh Kaul to make that case at another court hearing.
Gableman wants a lot of answers from Wolfe, but his investigation is mostly focused on the so-called Zuckerbucks and what role election managers in the state played with the outside group that spent those dollars.
Gableman is facing an end-of-February deadline to wrap up his investigation. Assembly Speaker Robin Vos wants to start voting on legislation inspired by the investigation in March.