JAS: KS Judicial Impeachment Bill Is “Affront to Democracy”
Contact: Laurie Kinney, firstname.lastname@example.org, (202) 588-9454; cell (571) 882-3615
WASHINGTON, D.C., March 21 - Justice at Stake Executive Director Susan Liss issued the following statement today, in response to the Kansas state Senate’s action to advance a bill, SB 439, that creates an expansive list of grounds on which state Supreme Court justices may be impeached:
“This bill is an affront to democracy and should be offensive to every Kansan. It is nothing more than a transparent effort by legislators to punish the Kansas Supreme Court for daring to do its job. Could this be any more self-serving? Legislators want to give themselves nearly limitless power under the Kansas Constitution so they can remove justices for any court ruling they don’t like.
"Like earlier iterations of this bill, the latest version is clearly unconstitutional. We remain deeply concerned about these repeated efforts to undermine the constitutional authority of the Kansas court system.”
The bill passed on a voice vote Monday evening, with final action to determine if it will move to the House expected on Tuesday, according to reports.
JAS noted that the role of the Kansas courts within a system of three co-equal branches of government is to provide judicial review, to ensure that the legislative and executive branches are following the Constitution and not infringing on the rights of Kansans.