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Judge won’t block state Supreme Court chief justice vote

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Wisconsin Supreme Court

MADISON (AP) — A federal judge has refused to issue an injunction that would allow Shirley Abrahamson to remain the state Supreme Court’s chief justice.

U.S. District Judge James Peterson said Friday that he didn’t see any harm befalling state courts if Justice Pat Roggensack serves as chief justice while he decides the case.

Voters amended the state constitution last month to allow the justices to elect their chief rather than automatically giving the title to the longest-serving justice. The court’s four-justice conservative majority promptly voted to demote the liberal-leaning Abrahamson and hand Roggensack the chief’s title.

Abrahamson has filed a federal lawsuit alleging her rights would be violated if she were demoted before her current term ends in 2019.