Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Should Johnson County Elect our Judges? Judge Kline?

I'm getting tired of the national elections as far the blogosphere is concerned. I try to keep the focus on Johnson County as much as possible but as you all know it can be a little boring at times here in the Golden Ghetto. Besides, like I said before, the final chapter is already written in Johnson County for President and it will go for McCain. We can't so anymore than that except run over to Ohio and register absentee and vote illegally like the Democrats are doing.

I've been noticing a sleepy little issue via yard signs in this election cycle. There is a ballot initiative on November 4th to change the way we select judges in Johnson County. When I first saw the signs my first thought was to consider the political motivation for someone wanting to make this change. My second natural thought was how long would it take for the pro-life groups to try to get Phillllllll Kline on the ballot. Bingo...give jocoeveryman a prize because his instincts are sharp as a tack.

It didn't take much research to see who was behind this initiative. Tim Golba. Mr. Golba is the man who for years was behind Kansans for Life and probably still pulls the strings there and was a leading driver in keeping Phill Kline front and center because of his unwavering support of prosecuting Planned Parenthood. I've written before that Phil Kline will get rich from the Pro-Life community if he hangs in there.

Tim now heads a new group, formed just for this initiative, called Kansans for Judical Review to push this initiative. He spins his former leadership role at Kansans Pro-Life by suggesting he has evolved beyond a single issue he and now he cares about lots of issues. Tim Golba only cares about other issues in how they relate to the pro-life issue. Tim wants to do this because he thinks that he can get more conservative judges in place, like Philllll Kline, and ultimately make a difference in Roe v Wade. The county is still a majority republican although not as conservative as it was in the past.

I've said before I am a pro-life person. I believe all life is valuable and worth protecting. I have the privledge of living my pro-life credentials daily in the same way Sarah Palin does. So don't send me some comment about how I'm not a real conservative or about how I don't have the stomach to fight out the pro-life agenda.

So as a political strategy from Mr. Golba, I have to give him credit. This is a solid strategy on his part and for the most part it is flying below the radar as he has planned. This is perfect for him because the only people who will be educated on it will be his people in the Right to Life crowd and he has been really smart not to position it as a Right to Life issue.

The problem is that while I'm pro-life, I've never been in favor of the election of judges. I think it politicizes the judical process just a little more and I've lived in places where they do it and I hate seeing all those judges running for election. Golba argues that with the current voter retention formula nobody pays attention to a judge's record. I don't think most will pay much attention to an election for a judge either except partisans.......and that's just we need, right? More partisan politics? Better candidates running for our legislative and executive offices that will approve/appoint good judges is the better solution. We don't need more political campaigns we need to win the key races we are losing now like Governor, House of Representatives, etc. We already have the option of voting them out by not retaining them. If they are really bad efforts can be made to remove a bad judge that way.

I can't support this initiative and one has to only look at Phill Kline to understand why it is such a bad idea. As another example, look at John Toplikar except the stakes are much higher than a county commissioner. The militant pro-life crowd would rather have an idiot that thinks just like they do than find a qualified person which again is the reason why we can't beat Dennis Moore. It isn't such a stretch to see Phil Kline or another deeply flawed, ethically challenged individual like him on the bench under a direct elect system. Nope, this is a really bad idea and bad public policy and I urge you to educate yourself on the issue and vote no on November no matter what Mr. Golba's get out the vote efforts otherwise tell you .