Home / Government and politics / Politics should stay out of Supreme Court, former judge says

Politics should stay out of Supreme Court, former judge says

By

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

With polls opening in two months, it’s not just President Barack Obama who’s fighting to stay in office.

In November, Florida residents can vote to either keep or replace some state Supreme Court justices and Appeals Court judges.

Former Iowa Supreme Court Chief Justice Marsha Ternus spoke in Gainesville as part of the Florida Free Speech Forum, expressing her concern about the role of politics in judicial elections.

Ternus was voted off the court when she decided to overturn her state’s ban on same-sex marriage.

“Make no mistake about it,” she said. “Politicized judicial elections undermine judicial independence and confidence in the courts.”

The trend will result in a judiciary that is less likely to be fair and impartial, she said.

Ternus discussed a 2001 national poll conducted by Justice at Stake, a national, nonpartisan organization with which aims to keep courts impartial and fair, which found 76 percent of voters surveyed believed campaign contributions affect a courtroom’s decision.

“Do we really want a court system where judges campaign like politicians?”

Katherine Hahn edited this for online.

About Cameron Taylor

Cameron is a reporter for WUFT News and can be contacted by calling 352-392-6397 or emailing news@wuft.org.

Check Also

FILE- In this April 11, 2012, file photo, State Attorney Angela Corey, special prosecutor in the Trayvon Martin case, speaks during a news conference in Jacksonville, Fla. Corey is up against two opponents in the Aug. 30, 2016, Republican primary for the state attorney’s office, which handles three northeast Florida counties. (AP Photo/Rick Wilson)

Florida Prosecutor Who Charged Zimmerman Could Lose Election

Polls show Angela Corey trailing in bid for re-election.