Justice Charles Johnson announces campaign for 5th term on Washington Supreme Court

Tacoma native was first elected in 1990

Tacoma News TribuneMarch 21, 2014 

While much of the legal news this week focused on the Washington Supreme Court's other Johnson, long-serving Justice Charles Johnson was preparing to announce his campaign for re-election.

On Monday, Justice James Johnson said he would retire for health reasons. While Gov. Jay Inslee can appoint a successor, that person would have to seek election to the unexpired term this November.

Then on Friday, the court's most-senior member Charles Johnson said he would be a candidate for a fifth six-year term. He said he announced during what has been dubbed Sunshine Week by open government advocates to officially declare.

"After more than two decades on the bench, I am excited to renew my commitment to serving the people of Washington," Johnson said in a prepared statement. "I look forward to receiving the same broad support that I enjoyed in the 1990, 1996, 2002 and 2008 elections."

In addition to his work on the court, Johnson is distinguished journalist in residence at Seattle University and was an adjunct professor there from 1995 to 2010, teaching seminars on state constitutional law.

Johnson is a Tacoma native, graduating from Curtis High School before getting an undergraduate degree from the University of Washington and a law degree from the University of Puget Sound in 1976.

Johnson surprised the legal establishment in 1990 by defeating then-Chief Justice Keith Callow after a low-profile campaign. He has been easily reelected since.   Four of the court's nine seats are on the ballot this year. In addition to Charles Johnson's seat and James Johnson's unexpired term, seats now held by Justices Mary Fairhurst and Debra Stephens will be on the summer and fall ballots.









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