Is there a Kavanaugh on your state supreme court already?

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The words to the entrance of the U.S. Supreme Court

This November, you undoubtedly have judges on your ballot. Here’s the thing: they’re not going to appear with an (R) or (D) next to their name. How will you know how to vote?

Judges like Brett Kavanaugh don’t appear out of nowhere. They start in lower courts and work their way up through the system. We already know Trump and the GOP Congress have been approving scores of federal judges, many of whom are far from being supremely qualified to serve.

Not surprisingly, Republicans are working hard to get ideologues on to your state courts as well. Talking Points Memo just published an article outlining how this is happening to state supreme courts all over the country. Read it here: The Parallels Between the Kavanaugh Fight and State Supreme Court Races. 

Over half of the states have judges up for election or re-election to their state’s supreme court. Ballotpedia has a list of those states–click on your state to get the names of the judges who are on your ballot.

Now, once you have the name of the judge who is going to appear on your ballot, what do you do? There won’t be a party label to help guide you. Here are some suggestions:

✦ If their name is highlighted on Ballotpedia, click through for more information about the judge. Those entries might give you additional ideas of what to search for.

✦ Pull up what your ballot will look like on Vote411. Click through any judge positions that show up. Some will have information listed provided by the candidate, others may not.

✦ Do a search on their name on Google to see if any articles come up. You might need to add the name of your state or the word “judge” to narrow the search if the judge has a more common name.

✦ If you have any friends who are attorneys, ask them. They are in the best position to know.

✦ If there are any ads running for or against a judge, try to find out who paid for the ad. That can tell you something about his/her political leanings.

This November, be sure to know who you are voting for or against. Protect the citizens of your state by making sure you don’t put a Kavanaugh-clone onto your courts.

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Categories: Explainers

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