Letters to the Editor

Judges: Take the muzzle off judicial candidates

Electing judges is the worst way to select them, except for all other methods, to paraphrase Winston Churchhill. The alternatives all involve appointing judges, either directly by the governor or other elected officials, and with or without input from some type of committee of people who are a lot smarter than the rest of us. We know they are smarter than us because they say so.

These appointments lack transparency and are subject to political considerations, nepotism and other forms of chicanery conducted in the proverbial “smoke-filled room.” The advocates for appointing judges instead of electing them would have us believe voters are smart enough to know which politicians to vote for but that the same voters are too stupid or uninformed to know which judicial candidate vote for.

The candidates for judgeships face severe restrictions on what they can say in their campaigns. Loosen the rules and allow them to speak as freely as other candidates for public office. Then the voters can be better informed, even though we are still stupid.