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South Carolina article highlights issues with legislative judicial appointment

The Post and Courier [1] in Charleston, South Carolina, published a story yesterday about lawmakers considering a changeĀ in the practice of spouses or other family members tied to legislators getting judgeships and other state posts.

South Carolina is one of two states where legislators elect judges. North Carolina is considering a form of judicial merit selection that critics have described as “window dressing” [2] for a legislative appointment process.

“I have a problem with legislators putting their spouse on college boards and judicial seats,” Rep. Mike Burns, R-Taylors, said after Wednesday’s joint House-Senate voting session of the South Carolina Legislature, according to the Post and Courier [3].

The article gives examples of perceived nepotism in recent judicial races.

It states that Burns intends to co-sponsor legislation already in the works that would bar current legislators’ immediate family members from running in a legislatively elected race.

Lawmakers in North Carolina have not made public the substantive details of a merit selection plan its considering, though a basic structure has been discussed. There is also a judicial redistricting proposal on the table that could change the way judges and prosecutors across the state are elected.

You can read the full Post and Courier article here [3].