(Todd “Taxpayer” Bailey) – Vote NO on SJR2, and retain your right to elect judges in the State of Nevada. Consider what happened in 2003, when the Supreme Court ruled against the people on the two-thirds requirement to raise taxes, that’s how important this is. One year later, right before an election, the Supreme Court reversed itself, and reaffirmed the two-thirds requirement to raise taxes, the NOW accepted law of the land. That would NEVER happen if SJR2 passes.
The foundation of the call to pass SJR2 are problems with the Judicial Commission in Nevada, a Constitutional body. There have been changes clearly identified, changes that may need to be made. So why are they not included in SJR2? Shouldn’t those changes come first? The problem is what to do with judges that go bad, right? So how does SJR2 solve this? It does not.
Many people have identified problems with the Judicial Discipline Commission, yet SJR2 creates two NEW commissions that are similar in structure of membership and answering to the same people. There is the NEW Judicial Selection Commission and the NEW Judicial Performance Commission. Neither of these would answer to the taxpaying voters.
How do these two NEW commissions help with Judicial Discipline? They don’t.
It’s interesting that the same people who created the problem of a less than satisfactory Judicial Commission, are now offering SJR2 as the solution. Why should we trust the people who created the current problem in the 70’s, with a new solution in 2010? Most Nevada taxpayers do not, they trust themselves to elect judges.
SJR2 did not get a unanimous, or even a two-thirds vote in the legislature. Sec 20 of SJR2 interferes with the Governor’s office too much. If the commissions are appointed by one governor, and another governor comes in after the appointments that he does not like, that could be a real constitutional crisis, forcing the governor to appoint someone he “thinks” is a bad choice. Remember 2003.
There are even studies in states that have adopted the “appointment” based system that SJR2 would create showing that “judges picked by so-called nonpartisan selection commissions overwhelmingly leaned Democrat. Since 1995 in Tennessee, 67% of appellate nominees more often voted in Democratic primaries, compared to 33% who voted more often in Republican primaries. Similar research in Missouri found that of roughly half of appellate nominees who made campaign contributions, some 88% donated to Democrats while only 12% went to Republicans.”
Source WSJ, “Missouri Brakes:
Stated another way, SJR2 would create a more liberal, over reaching, activist judiciary.
SJR2 sounds great, “if lawyers and the people want to get rid of a judge, they can in less than 18 months”. The problem is you force the lawyers and the people to be AGAINST a judge. That’s a really bad thing to be, few people challenge incumbent judicial candidates in this way.
Under the current system, you can be FOR someone else, without being AGAINST anyone, a safer place. Most people understand the difference, and so again SJR2 does not solve the problem, and may make it worse.
Most Nevadans do not support SJR2, it’s just not the solution.
In November 2010, Vote NO on SJR2, and retain your right to elect judges in the State of Nevada. If elected to the Nevada Senate, I will always vote NO on the appointment of judges, regardless of who the sponsor is.
You can read the legislative history of SJR2 here:
AND download a copy of SJR2 here:
I want to urge all candidates for the Nevada Legislature to Vote NO on SJR2 on election day, and speak out against it to their voters. Help retain the right to elect judges by the people in the State of Nevada.
(Mr. Bailey is a Republican candidate for the Nevada state senate in Washoe County)