2012.10.31 Sybil Diccion: Supreme Court justice election is very important

Written by David Green.

One of the least talked about races in the upcoming election is that of the Michigan Supreme Court. Seven justices reign on our court but this year, there are three vacancies and in my estimation, this race is more important than that of governor. 

We all know the Michigan Supreme Court is our state's court of last resort. They hear only cases that will have a significant impact on the state and its people. Therefore, it is imperative that our chosen justices remain independent and impartial. However, recent studies by the law schools of the University of Chicago, New York University and Duke University found that the Michigan Supreme Court ranked dead last among our nation's state supreme courts when it came to the court’s independence. According to these studies, “the court's decisions reversed decades of established and honored law when they ruled in favor of corporations and the insurance industry more than any other court in the nation.”

This all began early in Governor Engler’s terms of office when tort reform swept over Michigan. According to the Resource Center in Kalamazoo, “Not only did he (Governor Engler) manage to pass unfair laws disadvantaging working people and families but he also packed our Michigan State Supreme Court with the most biased and corporative judges this state has ever seen.” From 1999 (when a conservative Republican majority was first seated) to 2008, the court had overruled 38 of its prior decisions, in contrast to the previous 10-year period 1989–1998, in which the court had overruled only eight prior decisions.    http://domemagazine.com/glazer/lg0211

Because of the shameful results of these studies, we, as thoughtful citizens, need to research the candidates and make our choices based on the history of the candidate. All too frequently, we fail to vote for supreme court justices because the names of the candidates appear on the non-partisan section of the ballot. Anyone who casts a straight party ticket on Election Day will not cast a vote for the Supreme Court unless they specifically select the non-partisan section on the reverse side of the ballot.

 

 I have deliberately spent a great deal of time looking at the candidates' backgrounds and have found the Three Supremes who have proven over and over that they take the term "non-partisan" very seriously are McCormack, Kelley and Johnson. Their selection would literally "raise the bar," thus increasing our standing once again to Number One standing in the nation.

– Sybil Diccion

Main St., Morenci

  • Front.nok Hok
    GAMES DAY—Finn Molitierno (right) celebrates a goal during a game of Nok Hockey with his sister, Kyla. The two tried out a variety of games Saturday at Stair District Library’s annual International Games Day event. One of the activities featured a sort of scavenger hunt in which participants had to locate facts presented in the Smithsonian Hometown Teams exhibit. The traveling show left Morenci’s library Tuesday, wrapping up a series of programs that began Oct. 2. Additional photos are on page 7.
  • Station.2
    STRANGE STUFF—Morenci Elementary School students learn that blue isn’t really blue when seen through the right color of lens. Volunteer April Pike presents the lesson to students at one of the many stations brought to the school by the COSI science center. The theme of this year’s visit was the solar system.
  • Front.leaves
    MAPLE leaves show their fall colors in a puddle at Morenci’s Riverside Natural Area. “This was a great year for colors,” said local weather watcher George Isobar. Chilly mornings will give way to seasonable fall temperatures for the next two weeks.
  • Front.band
    MORENCI Marching Band member Brittany Dennis keeps the beat Friday during the half-time show of the Morenci/Pittsford football game. Color guard member Jordan Cordts is at the left. The band performed this season under the direction of Doyle Rodenbeck who served as Morenci’s band director in the 1970s. He’s serving as a substitute during a family leave.
  • Front.poles
    MOVING EAST—Utility workers continue their slow progress east along U.S. 20 south of Morenci. New electrical poles are put in place before wiring is moved into place.
  • Front.cowboy
    A PERFORMER named Biligbaatar, a member of the AnDa Union troupe from Inner Mongolia, dances at Stair District Library last week during a visit to the Midwest. The nine-member group blends a variety of traditions from Inner and Outer Mongolia. The music is described as drawing from “all the Mongol tribes that Genghis Khan unified.” The group considers itself music gatherers whose goal is to preserve traditional sounds of Mongolia. Biligbaatar grew up among traditional herders who live in yurts. Additional photos are on the back page of this week’s Observer.
  • Front.bear
    HOLDEN HUTCHISON gives a hug to a black bear cub—the product of a taxidermist’s skills—at the Michigan DNR’s Great Youth Jamboree. The event on Sunday marked the fourth year of the Jamboree. Additional photos are on page 12.

Weekly newspaper serving SE Michigan and NW Ohio - State Line Observer ©2006-2016