Buying the Bench

Yeah, that whole "impartial judiciary" thing...not so much. As this piece at Salon.com (you may have to watch a short ad to read the whole article) reveals, 24 candidates vying for seats in our nation's appellate and district courts gave directly to the officials who had a hand in winning their appointments - including President Bush.

 

The article sheds light on the appointment process: University of Dayton Professor Tom Hagel reveals the control the state party excercises over the appointment of judges, leading to a situation where "It gives the impression that the senators' decision-making process could be influenced by money."

 

And this isn't a practice exclusive to the Bush administration, the Clinton administration oversaw its own share of this kind of thing. Judges are raising their eyebrows, and the American Bar Association is reconsidering its guidelines on political contributions by judges. Do you want any part of a trial in which the judge bought her seat on the bench?