North Carolina candidate wants me to elect him to its high court

October 19, 2010
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I don’t live in North Carolina. I never have, and I’m pretty sure I just briefly drove through it once on my way to Florida. Yet, somehow, a North Carolina judge’s campaign has decided to send me an e-mail on why Judge Bob Hunter should be a North Carolina Supreme Court justice. Sorry, Judge Hunter, but I can’t vote for you as I live in Indiana and don’t care about your campaign.

I can’t figure out how I ended up the recipient of this campaign e-mail. I wonder what company sold my e-mail address to his campaign. They must have sent out a mass e-mail to any e-mail address they had and that’s how I ended up with it e-mail in my junk folder.

Out of curiosity, I searched for Judge Bob Hunter’s name online and got his campaign site to see if this was even a legit e-mail. Judge Hunter is on the North Carolina Court of Appeals. He has oodles of endorsements, from police organizations, former North Carolina chief justices and other judges, newspapers, and former North Carolina Gov. Jim Hunt.

This is why electing judges makes me uneasy. What if there is a case involving one of those newspapers that endorsed him that makes it all the way to the Supreme Court, where he could perhaps be a justice. What if Judge Hunter finds himself ruling on a case involving one of the sheriff’s departments that have endorsed him?

When you mix money and politics, it can be a recipe for appearances of impropriety or partiality. If you’ve got a lot of endorsements from various groups, will you be forced to recuse yourself a lot from court? That doesn’t seem very effective.

I’m happy with Indiana’s appointment and retention system for filling our appellate courts. I’d be happier if Indiana went to a uniform system of appointing judges instead of electing lower-court judges. And my inbox is also happy it isn’t filled with e-mail from judicial candidates vying for the bench.

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  1. Poor Judge Brown probably thought that by slavishly serving the godz of the age her violations of 18th century concepts like due process and the rule of law would be overlooked. Mayhaps she was merely a Judge ahead of her time?

  2. in a lawyer discipline case Judge Brown, now removed, was presiding over a hearing about a lawyer accused of the supposedly heinous ethical violation of saying the words "Illegal immigrant." (IN re Barker) http://www.in.gov/judiciary/files/order-discipline-2013-55S00-1008-DI-429.pdf .... I wonder if when we compare the egregious violations of due process by Judge Brown, to her chiding of another lawyer for politically incorrectness, if there are any conclusions to be drawn about what kind of person, what kind of judge, what kind of apparatchik, is busy implementing the agenda of political correctness and making off-limits legit advocacy about an adverse party in a suit whose illegal alien status is relevant? I am just asking the question, the reader can make own conclsuion. Oh wait-- did I use the wrong adjective-- let me rephrase that, um undocumented alien?

  3. of course the bigger questions of whether or not the people want to pay for ANY bussing is off limits, due to the Supreme Court protecting the people from DEMOCRACY. Several decades hence from desegregation and bussing plans and we STILL need to be taking all this taxpayer money to combat mostly-imagined "discrimination" in the most obviously failed social program of the postwar period.

  4. You can put your photos anywhere you like... When someone steals it they know it doesn't belong to them. And, a man getting a divorce is automatically not a nice guy...? That's ridiculous. Since when is need of money a conflict of interest? That would mean that no one should have a job unless they are already financially solvent without a job... A photographer is also under no obligation to use a watermark (again, people know when a photo doesn't belong to them) or provide contact information. Hey, he didn't make it easy for me to pay him so I'll just take it! Well heck, might as well walk out of the grocery store with a cart full of food because the lines are too long and you don't find that convenient. "Only in Indiana." Oh, now you're passing judgement on an entire state... What state do you live in? I need to characterize everyone in your state as ignorant and opinionated. And the final bit of ignorance; assuming a photo anyone would want is lucky and then how much does your camera have to cost to make it a good photo, in your obviously relevant opinion?

  5. Seventh Circuit Court Judge Diane Wood has stated in “The Rule of Law in Times of Stress” (2003), “that neither laws nor the procedures used to create or implement them should be secret; and . . . the laws must not be arbitrary.” According to the American Bar Association, Wood’s quote drives home this point: The rule of law also requires that people can expect predictable results from the legal system; this is what Judge Wood implies when she says that “the laws must not be arbitrary.” Predictable results mean that people who act in the same way can expect the law to treat them in the same way. If similar actions do not produce similar legal outcomes, people cannot use the law to guide their actions, and a “rule of law” does not exist.

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