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KS Gov Wants to Change Judicial Selection System

Judicial center Flickr photo by J. Stephen ConnThe Kansas Judicial Center, which houses the state Supreme Court. (Flickr Photo by J. Stephen Conn)

Governor Sam Brownback has proposed overhauling the way judges are selected in Kansas. In his State of the State address last (TUE) night, Brownback criticized the current system. Right now, a nominating commission selects candidates for the state Supreme Court and Kansas Court of Appeals, and the governor chooses one of the candidates. At the federal level, the president chooses judges, which must then be confirmed by the U.S. Senate. Brownback proposed moving towards the federal model or another system.

Paul Davis, from Lawrence, is the top Democrat in the Kansas House. He doesn’t like the idea of going to a system modeled after the federal government.

Five of the nine people on the state’s judicial nominating commission are attorneys. Some lawmakers have said that gives attorneys too much power in selecting judges.


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