Posts Tagged 'judicial elections'

Do last names matter in judicial elections? You bet they do.

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Last week’s elections give me cause to revisit the matter of whether judges should be elected or appointed by a body that vets them for their qualifications. First, let’s review the comments from the judicial candidates who ran for appellate and trial court positions in Franklin County, Ohio. They were all asked, “Do you support merit selection of state supreme court and state appellate judges and explain why.” With one exception, all were in favor of elections.

I wonder if ...

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Chief Justice O’Connor abandons some of her ideas

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The Dispatch reported today that Ohio Supreme Court Chief Justice Maureen O’Connor  has abandoned four of her proposals to change judicial elections. The three ideas that remain from the proposals she suggested in early 2013 are: 1) amend the constitution so that judicial elections take place in odd years, so that only judges would be on the ballot, and move judges from the bottom to the top of the ballot; 2) create a voter education website; and 3) increase the ...

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Electing judges often results in political taint

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Two events in2009 illustrates what happens when money and politics are involved with the selection of judges. The first is a case before the U.S. Supreme Court that mimics John Grisham’s novel, The Appeal, and the other is Gov. Ted Strickland’s appointment of two judges last week.

The reality version of The Appeal concerns Don Blankenship, chief executive officer of A.T. Massey Coal Co., who almost single-handedly changed the composition of the West Virginia Supreme Court by supporting Brent Benjamin against incumbent ...

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There’s a better way to get better judges

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In an op-ed piece published in May, Ohio Supreme Court Chief Justice Maureen O’Connor concluded that, based on a poll, “there is widespread agreement that we should elect our judges.” Believing it futile to advocate merit appointment but seeing some change as necessary, she has proposed eight changes to the judicial election system. In a piece published on July 13, 2013, attorney Bret A. Adams bitterly criticized judicial elections for producing incompetent judges.

So, what’s really going on?  First, let’s look ...

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