Jessica M. Karmasek Apr. 16, 2013, 3:30pm

MADISON, Wis. (Legal Newsline) -- Wisconsin Supreme Court justices are torn over whether to make changes to the state's judicial ethics code, including rules requiring a justice to recuse himself or herself from a case.

On Friday, the court held an Open Rules Conference to discuss a proposal by Chief Justice Shirley Abrahamson to revise the code.

Abrahamson wants to adopt provisions from a model code created by the American Bar Association.

The Superior Telegram reported Monday that the court was split over updating the code.

Justice David Prosser, in pointing to the ABA code's rules on recusal, argued that attorneys and special interest groups would abuse the rules.

Justice Patience Roggensack, who recently won reelection to the state's high court, said the code shouldn't be revised in an open meeting.

According to the newspaper, she argued the code revision is not a rules petition.

But Abrahamson and Justice Ann Walsh Bradley contend there's no reason why the changes shouldn't be discussed, and made, in the open.

According to the Telegram, the justices are having court staff create a chart so they can better compare the ABA code to the state's current code.

They will decide later if any changes will be made.

From Legal Newsline: Reach Jessica Karmasek by email at

More News