Friday, January 12, 2007

Deal Emerging on Judicial Selection?

This blog has devoted a considerable amount of space to Lopez-Torres (a case brought by the Brennan Center) and the Second Circuit's holding that New York must find a more open system for selecting judges for the Supreme Court (currently the system is dominated by party bosses at "judicial conventions").

As Jason Boog of Judicial Reports notes, since that decision has come down, the Brennan Center has been at odds with many of its traditional allies over how to satisfy New York State law and ensure that party bosses do not continue to dominate the selection of judges.

Finally, however, a compromise floated by the Brennan Center's Fritz Schwarz may bring these groups together:

Although [Fritz Schwarz] continued to insist on allowing candidates to petition their way onto primary ballots, he also embraced a continuing convention apparatus — albeit earlier in the year and with spots on the ballot for anyone gaining even a quarter of delegate votes. The idea emulates the nominating systems used for statewide offices, many of which have a convention bypass option to gather signatures and force primaries.

“This solution would give voters and candidates a real voice and a genuine opportunity to participate, while involving political parties in a way that is familiar to all participants in our State,” he explained.

Judicial Reports notes that "interviews this week with other key players in the reform debate indicate growing support for some version of such a compromise."

Categories: General, Judicial Selection

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