Judicial elections

Judicial campaign solicitation ban upheld by SCOTUS

April 30, 2015
 Bloomberg News
A divided Supreme Court of the United States ruled that states can bar judicial candidates from personally soliciting campaign contributions, leaving intact bans in 30 states.
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Judging how Indy elects judges

April 8, 2015
Dave Stafford
The 7th Circuit Court of Appeals posed tough questions for the state’s defense of the pay-to-play, power-sharing system of judicial slating in Marion County.
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7th Circuit grills state over Indy judge election system

April 2, 2015
Dave Stafford
As Indiana endured the harsh national glare from the Religious Freedom Restoration Act controversy this week, Indianapolis’ pay-to-play, power-sharing system for electing Marion Superior Court judges was on trial in Chicago.
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Democrats push to be on Marion County judge ballot

October 23, 2014
Dave Stafford
Marion County Superior judge elections ruled unconstitutional this month should not proceed Nov. 4 as the current ballot is drawn, according to court pleadings from candidates who were left out of the general election.
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Lawmakers in no rush to fix Marion County’s judicial selection process

October 22, 2014
Dave Stafford
Marion County’s unique power-sharing judicial-election system won’t be fixed anytime soon, even though a federal judge has ruled the four-decade-old system is unconstitutional.
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State appeals ruling invalidating Marion County judicial election law

October 20, 2014
Dave Stafford
The state is appealing a federal judge’s ruling this month declaring Marion County’s Superior judicial election statute unconstitutional.
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Judge finds Marion County judicial election system unconstitutional

October 9, 2014
Jennifer Nelson
A federal judge in Indianapolis has ruled that the statute outlining how Marion Superior judges are elected is unconstitutional. Because a stay has been issued, the ruling will not impact next month’s election.
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Judge sets January hearing in Marion County judicial slating suit

December 16, 2013
Dave Stafford
A federal judge has summoned attorneys for Gov. Mike Pence, Indiana Secretary of State Connie Lawson and members of the Indiana Election Commission to a pretrial conference in a lawsuit challenging the way Marion Superior judges are elected.
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Judge rejects interlocutory appeal in Marion Superior judiciary challenge

November 12, 2013
Dave Stafford
A federal judge has denied the state of Indiana’s motion for an interlocutory appeal, signaling that a trial probably won’t be needed in a lawsuit challenging the constitutionality of how Marion Superior judges are elected.
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Judicial candidate barred from office for 5 years

May 9, 2013
Jennifer Nelson
The attorney who made statements regarding Franklin Circuit Judge Steven Cox’s release of a prisoner during the time she was challenging him for his spot on the bench last fall cannot seek judicial office for five years, the Indiana Supreme Court ruled Thursday. The justices also publicly reprimanded Tammy R. Davis of Brookville.
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Governor, Election Commission now defendants in Marion County election case

January 7, 2013
Dave Stafford
A federal suit that challenges the constitutionality of Marion County judicial elections has been amended to name the governor and members of the Indiana Election Commission as defendants.
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2012 Year in Review

January 2, 2013
IL Staff
2012 was another busy year for the legal community. We welcomed new justices and a new chief justice, witnessed the beginnings of the state’s fifth law school, and saw local stories garner national and international attention. Here’s a look back at the top news stories from last year.
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Candidate facing charges from JQC loses election

November 7, 2012
IL Staff
Tammy R. Davis, the Democratic challenger to incumbent Republican Judge Steven J. Cox of Franklin Circuit Court, appears to have lost her bid to take over Cox’s spot on the bench. According to unofficial numbers from the Indiana Secretary of State’s office Wednesday morning, Davis received around 4,500 votes; Cox received nearly 6,000 votes.
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Common Cause, ACLU sue over Marion County judge slating

November 2, 2012
Dave Stafford
The way Marion Superior judges are elected is unconstitutional, a suit filed Thursday by Common Cause and the American Civil Liberties Union of Indiana alleges.
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Opponent's claims against judge regarding killer result in disciplinary charges

October 26, 2012
Dave Stafford
The woman challenging Franklin Circuit Judge Steven Cox for his job faces seven disciplinary charges over statements attributed to her about the judge’s release of a prisoner who a year later killed five people, according to a statement Friday from the Indiana Judicial Qualifications Commission. The commission has asked for a public hearing on the charges.
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ISBA members approve of appellate judges up for retention

October 16, 2012
IL Staff
The Indiana State Bar Association has released results of its 2012 Judicial Retention Poll. None of the six appellate judges up for retention in the Indiana Supreme Court or Court of Appeals received less than 81 percent of “yes” votes.
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Bar releases results of judicial candidate evaluation

October 4, 2012
IL Staff
Evansville Bar Association members have overwhelmingly recommended five of the seven candidates running for Vanderburgh Superior Court, based on results from a recent survey.
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Vanderburgh County judicial candidates to debate

September 17, 2012
IL Staff
The Evansville Bar Association is hosting a judicial debate for the Vanderburgh Superior judicial candidates in contested races on Wednesday.
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David named to chair Allen County JNC

September 11, 2012
IL Staff
Indiana Supreme Court Justice Steven David has been appointed to chair the Allen Superior Court Judicial Nominating Commission.
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Marion County slating reform gets new push

August 29, 2012
Dave Stafford
The Indianapolis Bar Association takes aim at the Marion Superior judicial selection process.
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Indiana Judges Association: Is it time for an electoral college for judges?

May 9, 2012
David Dreyer
Some people just do not like judges. But according to Indiana University Maurer School of Law professor Charles Geyh, most people do – at least up to a point.
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Marion County judicial 'slating fees' subject of 2 inquiries

February 1, 2012
Michael Hoskins
An Indianapolis attorney and an Indianapolis Bar Association political action committee want the Indiana Commission on Judicial Qualifications to look into how Marion County judicial candidates contribute to political parties as part of the process in running to be a judge.
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Attorney survey on Marion County judiciary begins

January 9, 2012
Michael Hoskins
Eighteen Marion County judges will be on the ballot in the May 2012 primary. The Indianapolis Bar Association is asking attorneys to voice their opinions about those jurists.
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Federalist Society to host talk on judicial selection

January 9, 2012
IL Staff
The Federalist Society for Law and Public Policy Studies, Indianapolis Lawyers Division Chapter, will host a talk on judicial selection Tuesday.
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SJCBA releases results of judicial survey

September 30, 2011
IL Staff
The St. Joseph County Bar Association has released the findings of its annual survey of Superior judges. The bar association conducts the survey each year even if no judges are up for retention, which is the case for 2011.
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  1. 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.

  2. 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

  3. She must be a great lawyer

  4. Ind. Courts - "Illinois ranks 49th for how court system serves disadvantaged" What about Indiana? A story today from Dave Collins of the AP, here published in the Benton Illinois Evening News, begins: Illinois' court system had the third-worst score in the nation among state judiciaries in serving poor, disabled and other disadvantaged members of the public, according to new rankings. Illinois' "Justice Index" score of 34.5 out of 100, determined by the nonprofit National Center for Access to Justice, is based on how states serve people with disabilities and limited English proficiency, how much free legal help is available and how states help increasing numbers of people representing themselves in court, among other issues. Connecticut led all states with a score of 73.4 and was followed by Hawaii, Minnesota, New York and Delaware, respectively. Local courts in Washington, D.C., had the highest overall score at 80.9. At the bottom was Oklahoma at 23.7, followed by Kentucky, Illinois, South Dakota and Indiana. ILB: That puts Indiana at 46th worse. More from the story: Connecticut, Hawaii, Minnesota, Colorado, Tennessee and Maine had perfect 100 scores in serving people with disabilities, while Indiana, Georgia, Wyoming, Missouri and Idaho had the lowest scores. Those rankings were based on issues such as whether interpretation services are offered free to the deaf and hearing-impaired and whether there are laws or rules allowing service animals in courthouses. The index also reviewed how many civil legal aid lawyers were available to provide free legal help. Washington, D.C., had nearly nine civil legal aid lawyers per 10,000 people in poverty, the highest rate in the country. Texas had the lowest rate, 0.43 legal aid lawyers per 10,000 people in poverty. http://indianalawblog.com/archives/2014/11/ind_courts_illi_1.html

  5. A very thorough opinion by the federal court. The Rooker-Feldman analysis, in particular, helps clear up muddy water as to the entanglement issue. Looks like the Seventh Circuit is willing to let its district courts cruise much closer to the Indiana Supreme Court's shorelines than most thought likely, at least when the ADA on the docket. Some could argue that this case and Praekel, taken together, paint a rather unflattering picture of how the lower courts are being advised as to their duties under the ADA. A read of the DOJ amicus in Praekel seems to demonstrate a less-than-congenial view toward the higher echelons in the bureaucracy.

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