And why shouldn't they? He's 100 percent their guy!
At least that's what the Wisconsin Civil Justice Council, a business group, declares on page 2 of its Guide to the Wisconsin Supreme Court. Interestingly, James Buchen, the WMC's vice president of government relations, is one of the group's officers.
"[T]his election will determine whether the Court remains pro- business, or whether it reverts to issuing decisions benefitting the plaintiff‘s bar," the report reads.
The guide runs down a number of the "pro-business" decisions Prosser supported. One that caught the Brawler's (admittedly non-lawyerly) eye was on page 13, The Estate of Robert Genrich v. OHIC Insurance Co. 2009 WI 67.
A short summary from the State Bar:
Doctors left a sponge inside Robert Genrich on July 24, 2003, when they completed a surgery to repair an ulcer.
When Genrich developed a fever and his white blood cell count escalated, doctors determined on Aug. 8, 2003 that the sponge was likely the source of an infection. That same day, Genrich underwent a second surgery to remove the sponge. Genrich died on Aug. 11, 2003, from sepsis allegedly associated with the sponge.
On Aug. 9, 2006, Genrich’s estate sued, alleging medical negligence. Genrich’s wife also filed a claim for wrongful death. The defendants successfully argued in circuit court that both actions were barred by the three-year statute of limitations found in Wis. Stat. § 893.55 (1m) (a).
The conservative majority upheld that ruling 4-3, essentially saying that the time limit for a wrongful death action caused by medical malpractice is counted from the date of injury rather than the date of death.
The minority differed, says the State Bar, claiming "that death is a necessary precondition for a wrongful death action and the statute of limitations should properly begin upon its occurrence."
But Justice N. Patrick Crooks, writing in dissent, said that running a statute of limitations period before the death occurs in a wrongful death action “unfortunately may foster a public perception that common sense sometimes is lacking in court decisions.”
The entire Wisconsin Bar coverage is worth a read.
How many jobs did Prosser's ruling save or create? It is impossible to say.
But for all the right likes to claim the public wants law and order justices (hence hapless David A. Clarke shilling for Prosser), the Brawler would submit that the public would be appalled by Prosser finding a loophole to let an insurance company off the hook.
Clearly, Prosser's campaign director was just being honest when announcing Prosser would be a "common sense compliment" to the Walker administration (something hopeful rival AAG JoAnne Kloppenburg jumped on immediately).
Meanwhile, the same folks who endorsed Scott Walker have now endorsed Prosser. Tough to see why in a confused, content-free piece, but it seems to have something to do with his being a "good writer" and a "hard worker."