N.C. Court Weighs New Judicial Selection Law

The North Carolina Supreme Court was to hear oral argument on Wednesday in a case involving how most N.C. Supreme Court justices are elected, The Associated Press reported.

A Superior Court panel recently voided a new law giving elected Supreme Court justices an option to seek a new term in a retention, rather than contested, election (see Gavel Grab). The state elections board asked for review of that ruling, and the case was set for the state’s highest court on an expedited basis.

Melissa Price Kromm of N.C. Voters for Clean Elections wrote a commentary in The Jefferson Post saying the new law was “another brazen move to reduce the power of average North Carolinians.” Her piece recounted how the legislature also scrapped the public financing for judicial elections. 

“Let’s hope the justices do the right thing by sustaining the ruling that struck down the law,” she wrote, “but, ultimately, there’s an even better long-term solution. Instead of putting our judges in such an untenable position and endangering our democracy, state leaders should simply return to the system that worked so well before.