Despite already passing ballot item for 2012 election, Arizona legislature takes up debate over judicial elections/merit selection again

2011 proved highly contentious when it comes to judicial elections. One state that had presumably settled the issue (legislatively speaking) was Arizona, which sent to the November 2012 a proposal to revise the state’s merit selection system, increase judicial terms, and increase the mandatory retirement age for judges.

SCR 1001 of 2011 was approved in April, before the state’s Supreme Court overturned an effort by the state’s governor and senate to remove from office the chair of the state’s redistricting commission.

Early indications are that SCR 1001 may now be taken off the ballot and replaced with something different. Already introduced by the chair of the Senate Appropriations Committee is SCR 1034 of 2012, a constitutional amendment to outright end merit selection in the state. In addition to ending the state’s merit selection system, it would also undo the provisions of SCR 1001 extending judicial terms and mandatory retirement ages.

The amendment is currently pending in the Senate Judiciary Committee.

 

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