Английский язык. Учебное пособие. Бабушкин А.П - 21 стр.


A Case of Merit Selection
A vacancy was created on a north Florida trial court in early August when
Governor Bob Graham promoted one of the judges to the intermediate District Court
of Appeals. To fill the trial court vacancy the state constitution requires the governor
to appoint a new judge temporarily until a permanent successor is chosen at the next
election. The next primary election was scheduled for October 7, but the qualifying
period for getting on the ballot already had ended. A temporary appointee, therefore,
would serve for two years before another scheduled election would be held. To avoid
a long temporary term, the governor issued an executive order calling for a special
judicial election to occur on the same day as the upcoming primary. Six candidates
from different parts of the judicial district immediately declared for the vacancy and
began to campaign. Many local lawyers and politicians guessed that the governor
would appoint the winner of the special election to the temporary vacancy.
But the state constitution also requires that the governor appoint a lawyer to a
temporary judicial vacancy
from those recommended by a merit judicial
nominating commission. But this panel had not met before the special election was
announced and the six candidates had declared for office. After the governor ordered
the election, the merit panel quickly gathered to interview potential appointees and
gave the governor a list of three names, which were to be kept secret until after the
election in order to avoid influencing the voters. However, the local newspaper,
arguing that the choices of the merit panel were part of the public record, threatened
to sue if the names were not released. The governor immediately complied.
Despite the merit panel’s legal right and opportunity to choose any lawyer in
the judicial district,
all three names on the merit list were among the six candidates
who previously had announced for the election.
The best known was Mallory Home,
a former local legislator with 20 years experience in the state capital. He recently had
become a lobbyist after losing a statewide election for U.S. senator. Another was J.
Lewis Hall, a socially prominent lawyer related to a former state supreme court judge
and other local officials. He also received the editorial endorsement of the only area
newspaper. The third was Robert Vossler, a less well connected but generally
respected local attorney. All three also were residents of Tallahassee, the district’s
only city. The three candidates not included on the list lived in small towns
throughout the judicial district. They generally were angered at the public
announcement, believing the voters would ignore them.
With the primary election scheduled in three weeks, the candidates got busy.
Home immediately raised over $23,000, mostly from other area politicians and
businessmen. This was nearly three times the amount raised by Hail, the newspaper
endorsed candidate. All others spent their own cash or raised small amounts largely
from friends and relatives. The money generally was spent on a media campaign.
Home and Hall received most of the votes, but neither won a majority. Thus a runoff
election was required between the two top contenders in the general election on
November 4. Despite criticism from some area lawyers, the governor did not make a
temporary appointment following the primary election. He insisted that the state
constitution gave him the discretion to determine exactly when the appointment