Gavel Grab

‘Judges Should Avoid Politics,’ Editorial Declares, Citing O’Connor

Retired Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O’Connor’s recent address to the Philadelphia Bar Association, and her urging reform of Pennsylvania’s judicial election system (see Gavel Grab) still is reverberating on the state’s editorial pages.

The Philadelphia Inquirer published an editorial headlined, “Judges should avoid politics.” It applauded Justice O’Connor’s warning of harmful consequences flowing from big-spending judicial elections and her support for a switch in Pennsylvania to a merit-based judicial selection system:

“O’Connor warned that, ‘It’s a serious problem that people in this country think of judges as politicians in robes.’ It’s time for Pennsylvania to correct that.”

Justice O’Connor, who has crusaded nationwide in the cause of protecting fair and impartial courts, recently joined Justice at Stake as its First Honorary Chair.

The editorial also quoted Lynn Marks, executive director of Pennsylvanians for Modern Courts, as saying, “Vocal support from national figures like her really highlights the need for change” in the commonwealth. PMC is a JAS partner organization.

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