Articles in regional publications that pertain to a wide range of North Carolina-related topics.
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North Carolina’s judiciary is rapidly becoming a comprised branch of government as new legislation has significantly changed the branch. Several laws passed by the General Assembly have changed campaign financing laws for judges, changed the review process for determining whether a law is unconstitutional or not, and stripped the Judicial Standards Commission of most of its regulatory ability. The North Carolina Bar Association has asked the governor to veto some of the legislation and commentators worry that the new changes will make judges partisan as they are influenced by large campaign donations.
The process of electing North Carolina’s judges is examined. The history of judicial elections in the state is explored. North Carolina does not hold partisan elections for judges. Many think the system should change as most citizens are uninformed about the candidates. Several changes are proposed, but most believe politicians have no will to change the current system despite its problems.
The issue is whether the selection of judges would improve or not should North Carolina switch from its current judicial elective system to a merit selection system.
Helms argues for merit selection while Rosch advocates the present elective system with some modifications.