Wisconsin state Supreme Court Justice Rebecca Bradley is publicly apologizing for offensive columns and letters she wrote in her college newspaper in the early 1990s, which contained denigrating comments about gays, AIDS victims, and liberals.
Bradley was appointed to the state Supreme Court seat late last year by Republican Gov. Scott Walker after the sudden death of liberal-leaning Justice Patrick Crooks. Bradley was already running for the seat on the court, and Crooks had previously announced his own retirement. She is now in a tight race for election to a full 10-year term against Judge JoAnne Kloppenburg, who very narrowly lost a previous race for the court in 2011 against another conservative incumbent.
The columns were publicly revealed Monday by the liberal advocacy group One Wisconsin Now.
In the Marquette Tribune, the student paper at Marquette University, Bradley declared that “the homosexuals and drug addicts who do essentially kill themselves and others through their own behavior deservedly receive none of my sympathy” — in contrast to a friend of hers, who had contracted HIV through a blood transfusion.
In another column she wrote: “One will be better off contracting AIDS than developing cancer, because those afflicted with the politically correct disease will be getting all of the funding. How sad that the lives of desperate drug addicts and queers are valued more than the innocent victims of more prevalent ailments.
Bradley’s campaign released the following statement in response:
“Recently an article I wrote while a college student at Marquette 24 years ago has surfaced on left leaning blogs and now the mainstream press. I was writing as a very young student, upset about the outcome of that presidential election and I am frankly embarrassed at the content and tone of what I wrote those many years ago.
To those offended by comments I made as a young college student, I apologize, and assure you that those comments are not reflective of my worldview. These comments have nothing to do with who I am as a person or a jurist, and they have nothing to do with the issues facing the voters of this state.
This is a blatant mudslinging campaign to distract the people from the issues at hand. This election is about diametrically opposed judicial philosophies. I have run a positive campaign focused on the rule of law and strict adherence to the U.S. and Wisconsin Constitutions. I am proud of the twenty plus years of experience I bring to this race, including my time as a Judge on the Milwaukee children’s court, the appellate court, and Supreme Court. I will work for the people of this state to ensure that justice is served and upheld on the state’s highest court.” – Justice Rebecca Bradley
As highlighted by WisPolitics, Bradley wrote the following on such diverse topics as AIDS, homosexuality, and the election of President Bill Clinton in 1992:
- “Heterosexual sex is very healthy in a loving marital relationship. Homosexual sex, however, kills.”
- “Perhaps AIDS Awareness should seek to educate us with their misdirected compassion for the degenerates who basically commit suicide through their behavior.”
- “I will certainly characterize whomever transferred their infected blood a homosexual or drug-addicted degenerate and a murderer.”
- “We have now elected a tree-hugging, baby-killing, pot-smoking, flag-burning, queer-loving, bull-spouting ‘60s radical socialist adulterer to the highest office in our nation. Doesn’t it make you proud to be an American? We’ve just had an election which proves the majority of voters are either totally stupid or entirely evil.”
- “Either you condone drug use, homosexuality, AIDs-producing sex, adultery and murder and are therefore a bad person, or you didn’t know that he supports abortion on demand and socialism, which means you are dumb.”
To read the full commentaries by Bradley (written under her maiden name, Grassl) courtesy of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, click here.