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California proposes campaign reforms for judges.

On Behalf of | Mar 16, 2009 | Firm News

Created: 16 March 2009

The National Law Journal (3/16, MacLean) reports, “Proposed reforms to ethical and campaign requirements for California’s judiciary would for the first time require trial judges to disqualify themselves in cases in which they received $1,500 or more in campaign donations from either side” and “in a second major change, lawyers challenging sitting judges for election would be evaluated using the same evaluation system that the Judicial Nominations and Evaluations Commission uses for appointed judges.” William McLaughlin, chairman of judicial campaign finance task force, “referring to the West Virginia case” said that “there are indications elsewhere that caused us to think that, to maintain the trust and confidence of the public, we need not only to honor [the canons] but also establish a rule to require recusal.” He added, “The $1,500 donation limit was selected because that is already the amount set by law for recusal if a judge owns stock in a company with a matter before him or her.”