A report on big spending in judicial elections will be unveiled Oct. 29. It was coauthored by Justice at Stake, the Brennan Center for Justice and the National Institute on Money in State Politics. See Gavel Grab for more.
Recent Fair-Courts Articles
In the race for three seats on the Pennsylvania Supreme Court, Democratic candidates have a lopsided fundraising edge over Republicans, and GOP leaders have their hands out. Gavel Grab has details.
Will the Wisconsin Supreme Court election in 2016 ultimately become a referendum on Gov. Scott Walker? The Associated Press explores this scenario. For more, visit Gavel Grab.
The U.S. Supreme Court has agreed to hear the appeal of a death row inmate whose legal arguments take aim at a Pennsylvania judge over tough-on-crime themes during his election campaign. Gavel Grab has more.
In Kansas, a law professor writes, the legislature "appears prepared to retaliate against the judges who determine legislative action violates the state constitution." For more, check out Gavel Grab.
At the request of the Kansas attorney general, a district court judge ordered that a law to defund the state judiciary could not be enforced until mid-March, when legislators will be back at work. For more see Gavel Grab.
A Reuters analysis that finds a link between judicial elections and executions is “sobering,” Justice at Stake said. For more, visit Gavel Grab.
An expert who tracks judicial nominations says there is little precedent in the Reagan, Clinton, and George W. Bush administrations for the current Senate “slowdown” in confirming federal judges. Gavel Grab has more.
Reform proposals affecting impartial justice in Washington state include calls for more restrictive judicial recusal rules and for public financing of state Supreme Court justice elections. Gavel Grab has more.
In multiple states, 2015 already has become a banner year for court bashing by elected politicians, JAS Interim Executive Director Liz Seaton writes in a piece at Talking Points Memo. See Gavel Grab for details.
Justice at Stake was quoted by the Seattle Times as suggesting that Washington state could have more robust recusal laws governing justices in cases involving campaign donors. For more, visit Gavel Grab.
A candidate for a Superior Court judgeship in North Carolina was indicted on multiple charges including trying to influence a judicial race. For more, see Gavel Grab.
An unorthodox system for electing judges in Marion County, Indiana, is unconstitutional, a panel of the Seventh U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled. For more, visit Gavel Grab.
“An ax is hanging” over funding of the Kansas courts because “elected officials … chose to make political pawns of state courts,” JAS said on Thursday after a ruling by a Shawnee Court judge. For more, visit Gavel Grab.
After a judge struck down an administrative overhaul provision for Kansas courts, questions were raised as to whether funding for the entire court system was in jeopardy. See Gavel Grab for more.
In a Shawnee County courtroom, attorneys for a Kansas district judge and for the state squared off over what the judge's lawyer called "tyrannical" actions by the legislature and governor. Gavel Grab has more.
The new municipal judge in Ferguson, Mo. has announced sweeping changes in court procedures, intended to restore public confidence in the system. Visit Gavel Grab for more.
Amid an ongoing fight over a Virginia Supreme Court judgeship, a Richmond Times-Dispatch editorial calls for the legislature to adopt a merit-based selection system. Gavel Grab has more.
Merit-based systems for choosing state judges have come under assault this year, according to Gavel to Gavel, yet “Major changes failed to pass." Learn more from Gavel Grab.
It was the Constitution, not a "cabal of unelected judges," that resulted in the Connecticut Supreme Court's striking down the state's death penalty, a defense attorney writes. Gavel Grab has more.
Russell Wheeler of Brookings reports that that judicial vacancies likely will climb in the final two years of President Obama’s administration and nominations will decline. For more, check out Gavel Grab.
JAS Executive Director Bert Brandenburg will step down this month after having helping to build “one of the most visible groups opposing the politicization of judicial seats,” the Legal Times reported. Find out more from Gavel Grab.
Some politicians threatened impeachment after the Washington Supreme Court fined the state $100,000 a day until legislators come up with a concrete plan to adequately fund K-12 education. Read Gavel Grab for more.
Rep. Steve King of Iowa, blasting a “rogue” U.S. Supreme Court, plans to propose a constitutional amendment for term limits and for elections of its justices. Read Gavel Grab for details.
When politics trumps qualifications in selecting our judges, it’s a threat to democracy, JAS Executive Director Bert Brandenburg wrote in a Washington Post letter to the editor. Visit Gavel Grab for more.