Friday, February 15, 2008


St. Louis Park State Representative Steve Simon has authored a bill in the Minnesota House this year that would set up a different system to elect judges that he hopes would avoid the 'tsunami' heading out way. The Supreme Court struck down Minnesota rules that didn't allow judges to identify their political party when running and restricted the things they could say while running for the position. Simon's system would have judges recommended to the Governor by an independent panel similar to the current system. Once the judges were appointed, they would be subject to a retention election; each would be on the ballot with the question 'should Judge X be retained', yes or no? Simon believes this would avoid the wave of judgeship campaigns that designate political parties, raise large sums of money, and even comment on issues that may come before them in legal cases. Simon's bill would allow Minnesota voters to decide on a constitutional amendment to put the system in place.

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