1 million ‘yes’ votes

November 12, 2008
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The Indiana Supreme Court announced today that more than one million people voted to retain the three justices up for retention this year. That’s the first time that many people have voted “yes” to keep a justice in office.

I wonder how many of the people who voted – either yes or no – knew anything about the judges and justices they were retaining.

This year, the courts’ created a retention Web site with information about the judges and justices for voters, and more than 6,000 people visited the site. (The retention site included a link to our retention site, with links to past stories about retention issues.)

I think it’s great the courts created a Web site to educate voters about the people up for retention, but I have to wonder how many of those 6,000 people that visited the site weren’t attorneys or those already familiar with the court system in our state.

I grew up in a county that didn’t retain its trial judges, so if it wasn’t for my job with Indiana Lawyer, I wouldn’t be familiar with the process to keep appellate judges on the bench. I also wouldn’t have had a clue who any of the appellate judges were. I imagine it’s that way for a lot of people who don’t interact with the courts system, no matter what county they live in.

When the next election rolls around in which judges or justices are up for retention, it would be a good idea for the courts to publicize the site even more, both within the legal community and to the general public. Not everyone visits the state’s Web site frequently, or makes an effort to check out the judicial section of the site, so many people may have missed the resource.

The more people who can learn about the judges up for retention the better because these are the men and women who make important legal decisions that may affect our everyday lives.
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  • They know NOTHING and it is sad that they even think they have a vote.

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