Observations and musings on Jacksonville Politics

Supreme Court Weighs in on Contributions and Judicial Bias

Interesting article on a US Supreme Court decision in the Miami Herald this morning on an issue I had never really considered.  In a West Virginia case, the court ruled 5-4 that “significant” campaign contributions or other electoral assistance pose a risk of “actual bias.” 

“There is a serious risk of actual bias … when a person with a personal stake in a particular case had a significant and disproportionate influence in placing the judge on the case by raising funds or directing the judge’s election campaign when the case was pending or imminent,” Justice Anthony Kennedy wrote.

The ruling could trigger more demands for judges in 39 states with elected judges, including Florida, California, Texas, and Washington, to recuse themselves from cases in which their campaign contributions could create conflicts.

Wonder how many folks involved in local lawsuits will go out and search campaign contributions for Jacksonville’s elected judges?

Read more about the court decision here.


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