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Today: Senate committee to take up bill limiting Cooper’s judicial appointment power

The Senate Judiciary I Committee will review a bill today that would take judicial appointment power away from Gov. Roy Cooper.

The Democratic governor currently has the power to appoint anyone he sees fit to fill district attorney vacancies and vacancies on the Supreme Court, Court of Appeals and Superior Court.

House Bill 335 would change his power to require that he appoint from a list of three recommendations comprised by an executive committee of the political party with which the vacating member was affiliated when elected.

For example, if HB 335 bill had been passed before former Court of Appeals Judge Douglas McCullough, a registered Republican, retired Monday, Cooper would not have been able to appoint Judge John Arrowood, a registered Democrat, to replace him.

Instead, Cooper would have had to appoint someone from a list of three Republicans compiled by an executive committee of Republicans.

Rep. Justin Burr (R-Montgomery, Stanly) introduced the bill, along with a flurry of other bills that take aim at Cooper’s judicial appointment powers.

The public committee meeting will take place at noon today in room 415 of the Legislative Office Building.

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