MADISON – Judge Brett Blomme gave campaign contributions to several Democrats and court candidates in the years before he was charged with possessing child pornography and those politicians are now shedding his donations.
The Milwaukee County Circuit judge’s largest donation by far was made to U.S. Sen. Tammy Baldwin in 2018. She plans to give the $1,000 he provided her to charities, according to her campaign.
Blomme, 38, was charged in Dane County Circuit Court last week with seven counts of possessing child pornography. Each count carries sentences of up to 15 years in prison. Blomme has not yet entered a plea in the case.
Over the last decade, Blomme has given $300 to Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett. Barrett plans to donate the money to charities, according to his campaign.
In 2019, Blomme gave $50 to state Sen. LaTonya Johnson of Milwaukee. She said she would give the money to Project Ujima, an anti-violence program in Milwaukee.
Blomme gave $300 to businessman Andy Gronik and $50 to attorney Matthew Flynn when they ran for governor in 2018.
Gronik said his campaign account no longer has any funds but said he regularly donates money to charities and will continue to do so. Flynn’s campaign account is also empty and he said he does not plan to return the money or give it to charity.
Blomme gave $100 to Jon Richards in 2014 when he was running for attorney general. Richards, who is now a Milwaukee County Circuit Court judge, said he planned to give that sum to a charity.
Blomme donated $35 to Dane County Circuit Judge Rhonda Lanford when she made her first run for the bench in 2013.
Lanford said she did not recall receiving the donation from Blomme. She said as a judge she has a duty to presume people are innocent and would not make a decision on what to do with his donation until his case is concluded.
Contact Patrick Marley at email@example.com. Follow him on Twitter at @patrickdmarley.