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5 finalists named for St. Joseph judgeship

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The St. Joseph County Superior Court Judicial Nominating Commission has selected the five finalists to fill an upcoming vacancy on the court when Chief Judge Michael P. Scopelitis retires in June.

The finalists are Andre B. Gammage, managing partner at Berger & Gammage; Steven L. Hostetler, a partner at Thorne Grodnik LLP; Elizabeth C. Hurley, magistrate judge for the St. Joseph Circuit Court; Mark F. James, associate at Anderson Agostino & Keller P.C. and public defender; and Jeffrey L. Sanford, sole practitioner, deputy public defender and South Bend deputy city attorney.

The finalists’ names will be submitted to Gov. Mike Pence, who has 60 days after receiving the list to select Scopelitis’ replacement. Scopelitis will retire June 3.

This is the second time this year the nominating commission has interviewed candidates. A spokesperson for Pence said he has not made his selection to fill the vacancy that will be created after Judge Roland Chamblee retires March 31. Those finalists are Mary Catherine Andres, St. Joseph deputy prosecuting attorney; attorney Scott Duerring of Duerring Law Offices in South Bend; Gammage; Hurley; and Sanford.

The nominating commission is made up of seven members – three attorneys and three nonattorneys – and is chaired by Justice Mark Massa.

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  1. Major social engineering imposed by judicial order well in advance of democratic change, has been the story of the whole post ww2 period. Contraception, desegregation, abortion, gay marriage: all rammed down the throats of Americans who didn't vote to change existing laws on any such thing, by the unelected lifetime tenure Supreme court heirarchs. Maybe people came to accept those things once imposed upon them, but, that's accommodation not acceptance; and surely not democracy. So let's quit lying to the kids telling them this is a democracy. Some sort of oligarchy, but no democracy that's for sure, and it never was. A bourgeois republic from day one.

  2. JD Massur, yes, brings to mind a similar stand at a Texas Mission in 1836. Or Vladivostok in 1918. As you seemingly gloat, to the victors go the spoils ... let the looting begin, right?

  3. I always wondered why high fence deer hunting was frowned upon? I guess you need to keep the population steady. If you don't, no one can enjoy hunting! Thanks for the post! Fence

  4. Whether you support "gay marriage" or not is not the issue. The issue is whether the SCOTUS can extract from an unmentionable somewhere the notion that the Constitution forbids government "interference" in the "right" to marry. Just imagine time-traveling to Philadelphia in 1787. Ask James Madison if the document he and his fellows just wrote allowed him- or forbade government to "interfere" with- his "right" to marry George Washington? He would have immediately- and justly- summoned the Sergeant-at-Arms to throw your sorry self out into the street. Far from being a day of liberation, this is a day of capitulation by the Rule of Law to the Rule of What's Happening Now.

  5. With today's ruling, AG Zoeller's arguments in the cases of Obamacare and Same-sex Marriage can be relegated to the ash heap of history. 0-fer

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