Merit Selected Judges


Study: Merit-Selected Judges are Disciplined Less

Peter Hardin June 18th, 2010 | Category: JAS Partner News,Merit Selection

A new study by the American Judicature Society looks at discipline rates for judges placed on the bench through merit selection, as opposed to contested elections, and finds the former are disciplined at lower rates.

In addition, the AJS study finds that the judges selected by merit methods get the most lenient sanctions if they are disciplined, and are less likely to be unseated.

In discussion of the pros and cons of different methods of picking state judges, proponents of merit selection often have contended that their preferred method results in fewer unfit judges on the bench. The study was intended to evaluate that view. Its author, Malia Reddick, concludes:

“These findings suggest that merit selection systems may produce fewer unfit judges than judicial elections and provide some support to one of the claims advanced by merit selection proponents.”

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