Gavel Grab

Ohio Court Candidate Comments in Gavel Grab


Gavel Grab and Justice at Stake Campaign do not endorse candidates in judicial elections. Having said that, we were happy to get a note from Ohio Judge Mary Jane Trapp, who is seeking a seat on the Ohio Supreme Court, responding to a Gavel Grab post about the upcoming race and offering YouTube links with her comments on judicial elections and on recusal rules.

Judge Trapp called herself “a religious reader” of Gavel Grab. One YouTube video link that she sent includes her answers to press questions and her comments about efforts to make judicial elections “more inclusive and more balanced and more open.” Another YouTube link gives her announcement remarks at a press conference.

Judge Trapp said public financing for judicial elections is “something that needs to be looked at,” and it has “been very successful in North Carolina. But we have a budget issue, so we have to be realistic about that.”  She noted that Ohio voters have rejected a merit system for selecting judges, and she was disappointed that when the state Supreme Court had an opportunity to pass stronger rules governing recusal of judges, the matter was taken off the table. “I intend to bring it back to the court’s attention,” she added.

The judge, with Democratic backing, is seeking a seat held by Justice Judith Ann Lanzinger, whose term expires at the end of 2010. Ohio’s Supreme Court is all Republican.

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