U.S. Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg spoke out last month on a very important issue, urging some badly-needed reform of the American court system. The type reform the highly-respected jurist was referring to dealt with the obscene sums of money being spent electing judges throughout the county. Justice Ginsburg joined with her former colleague, Sandra Day O’Conner, who has been an outspoken proponent of cleaning up the system. Fortunately, concerns about the greatly expanding role of big money in judicial elections has been getting much more attention in recent months. This is due to the huge amounts of money being poured into the political campaigns of state judges around the country and the fact that the media is reporting on the subject.
Few citizens realize that unprecedented amounts were spent in the last two election cycles. It has been reported that, in the past decade, candidates for state judgeships took in more than $206 million, which more than doubled the $83 million received by judicial candidates in the 1990s. I suggest our readers take a look at the report released recently by the Brennan Center for Justice at NYU School of Law and Justice at Stake. These are non-partisan groups that have been working on reforming the judicial selection process. The amounts mentioned above don’t ever include the hundreds of millions spent by so-called issue groups which don’t have to report their sources of funding nor how much they spend on behalf of candidates for judicial office. Reform of a broken system, as it relates to electing judges, is badly needed. Hopefully, the American people will agree with Justices Ginsburg and O’Conner and demand reform.
Source: ABC news
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