Mike Browne, Deputy Director
State Supreme Court Candidate Was Paid Thousands of Dollars by Hate Group, What Did He Do to Earn It?
MADISON, Wis. — State Supreme Court candidate Brian Hagedorn still has not disclosed the contents of speeches given to a hate group for which he was compensated in 2015, 2016, 2017 and 2018. Media reports, based on information uncovered by One Wisconsin Now, have detailed how Hagedorn was paid thousands of dollars and received gifts from the Alliance Defending Freedom, an extreme anti-LGBTQ hate group. Hagedorn’s campaign said the cash and gifts were given in exchange for speeches he gave at ADF sponsored conferences held in locations like Cancun, Mexico.
“While a sitting judge, Brian Hagedorn gave speeches, for which he was compensated, to a hate group,” noted One Wisconsin Now Research Director Joanna Beilman-Dulin. “Hiding his comments from the public is just another in the long list of reasons why Brian Hagedorn cannot be trusted to keep his homophobia to himself and treat everyone who may come before him in a court of law equally before the law.”
Between 2015 and 2018 State Supreme Court Candidate Brian Hagedorn took over $3,000 in payments and gifts from an organization that advocates for and engages in litigation to advance an extreme, anti-LGBTQ agenda. Hagedorn was appointed to a judicial seat by former Gov. Scott Walker in 2015 after having served as legal counsel in Walker’s administration since 2011.
The ADF is deemed to be a hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center. In making the designation, they cite the ADF’s support for, “the recriminalization of homosexuality in the U.S. and criminalization abroad” and note the group “has defended state-sanctioned sterilization of trans people abroad; has linked homosexuality to pedophilia and claims that a “homosexual agenda” will destroy Christianity and society. ADF also works to develop “religious liberty” legislation and case law that will allow the denial of goods and services to LGBT people on the basis of religion.”
Hagedorn’s homophobia was first reported on by numerous media outlets that detailed a series of virulently homophobic, anti-LGBTQ blog posts he authored including suggesting a U.S Supreme Court ruling striking down a discriminatory Texas law could result in legalizing sex with animals.
One Wisconsin Now research previously uncovered the discriminatory policies of a private school Hagedorn helped found and at present sits on the board of directors. The school bans members of the LGBTQ community from working there, would result in their termination if they were discovered to be LGBTQ and would expel students if they, or their parents, are gay.