Changing Iowa’s judicial nomination process: A satire
If there is one thing that unites all Iowans, regardless of age, political affiliation, income, education or religion, it is that we want our judges beholden to a political party. We in Iowa know that the right version of justice cannot be established and maintained if judges won’t abide by the majority-party rule. We certainly know that we don’t want judges ruling according to such wishy-washy documents like the Iowa Constitution. What is worse is the quagmire of legal precedent. What is to be done?
Get in touch with your local Iowa State House Representative or Senator to tell that person to support the Judicial Nominating Commission Modernization. There is nothing quite so powerful and so good as the modern.
The current antediluvian way of nominating justices was established in 1962 long before our more modern, and therefore more correct, understanding of how courts should work. Currently, Iowa has a nonpartisan commission that puts forth judges based on merit for the governor to appoint. Half of the members of that commission are citizens rightly appointed by the governor, but the other half are lawyers elected by other lawyers. I’m sure that you like me wonder what business lawyers have in choosing judges. Such a way of choosing judges is as ludicrous as average people electing other people to represent them in a legislative body. Neither lawyers nor the average persons should be allowed such power.
Most concerning to average Iowans, like myself, is the simple fact that only two bodies, the executive and legislative are run by the majority party. The third, rogue body, that judicial branch needs to be constrained not by law or constitution but by political patronage. The steady rock of partisan politics will lead the judicial way. What could be more modern and more solid than partisan politics?
If anything this law does not go far enough to establish the right kind of justice in the state. Justices should be appointed for life with no retention vote. Then you and I could sleep soundly in our beds as justice flows throughout the state.