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Thread: Appointing judges

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    Appointing judges

    I was thinking about how to fairly appoint judges and I had this idea. Let's say that instead of the President appointing judges and prosecutors, it is done by a judicial board . This board would be made up of 15 members. Members would be required to have a law degree and be at least 50 years old. Each member would have a single 15 year term and each year when a vacancy is open, a new candidate would be selected at random to fill the seat.

    When a judicial position needs to be filled, each board member would be able to nominate one candidate. The board members would rank each candidate and a Condorcet method would be used to determine which candidate gets the position. Judicial appointments would have terms instead of lifetime appointments and the board could remove them before their term is up with a 2/3's vote.

    Would this be better than the system we use now or would it just be a cluster fuck? What do you think is the best way to appoint the judges? How would you stop any obstruction and stalling in the selection process as the Republicans have been doing?

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    Fair dinkum thinkum bilby's Avatar
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    I am finding it hard to think up a worse option than partisan direct election for choosing judges. In any community of more than about 100-150 people, it seems to be a completely stupid idea; In a small community, where everyone knows everyone else pretty well, it could be made to work, but seems pointless.

    Unsurprisingly, nobody of any significance, except the crazy Americans, and the more than slightly strange Swiss, does it; Japan also elects judges under her new constitution post 1945, but that was dictated by the Americans, so it's not really their fault.

    Given that to be effective, judges need to be learned and experienced, I think your idea has considerable merit.

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    The one thing that is good about electing is it provides a means of getting rid of bad judges. It's not very effective, though.


    How about a totally different approach: Judges are appointed but are subject to a retention vote--but you get one ballot per case you had before the judge since the last retention vote.

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    Novel and possibly horrible or possibly great idea: Do it by draft amongst lawyers who have practiced X number of years.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jolly_Penguin View Post
    Novel and possibly horrible or possibly great idea: Do it by draft amongst lawyers who have practiced X number of years.
    That's asking for people to do a poor job because they don't like it.

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