by Doug Clark, Greensboro News-Record, March 16, 2017.
Gov. Roy Cooper issued his first veto today, and there’s a chance it won’t be overridden.
The measure restores partisan elections for District and Superior Court judges. Cooper’s objections are exactly on target, in my opinion. He said:
“North Carolina wants its judges to be fair and impartial, and partisan politics has no place on the judges’ bench. We need less politics in the courtroom, not more.
“Judges make tough decisions on child abuse, divorce, property disputes, drunk driving, domestic violence and other issues that should be free from politics. This bill reverses that progress.
“We should let people elect judges based on their experience and ability to do the job, not which party they pick.
“I am also concerned that judges who have chosen to register as unaffiliated voters so as to avoid partisan politics now have a difficult path to getting on the ballot.”
House Bill 100 passed both the House and Senate by more than the three-fifths margin needed to override a veto.
But the initial approval in the House was closer than that. After some changes were made in the Senate, the concurrence vote was by a larger majority.