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Republican powerhouses urge GOP to leave Supreme Court justices alone

by Jane Musgrave | October 8th, 2012

Three  Republican powerhouses – including a former lieutenant governor candidate and two former U.S. attorneys -  tried unsuccessfully over the weekend to get the Florida GOP to reverse course on its pledge to work to unseat three Florida Supreme Court justices.

“The (Republican Party of Florida) was within its legal right to express its position publicly, ” J. Allison DeFoor, Roberto Martinez and Marcos Jimenez wrote in a blunt, yet thoughtful, three-page letter to the GOP executive committee. “But, just because it has that legal right, does not mean it was right for it to do so. The retention of Supreme Court justices should not be turned into partisan political affairs.”

Even though the three offered a less incendiary alternative, GOP bosses said no dice.

DeFoor, a longtime party loyalist who was Gov. Bob Martinez’s running mate in 1990, and the two former top federal prosecutors for the Miami-based district said it’s time to retire the nearly 40-year-old merit retention system.

They are suggesting that justices be appointed for 12- to 15-year terms. Confirmation by the Florida Senate would be required so the public would still have some oversight, said Martinez, who served as an adviser to Republican governors Jeb Bush and Charlie Crist.

The idea for set terms for high court justices didn’t gain any traction with party officials, who are decrying Justices Barbara Pariente, Peggy Quince and Fred Lewis as activist jurists, who are guided by liberal principles, not the law. But, Martinez said, he is hopeful eventually it will.

“I don’t want judges to feel they have to make a decision based on the popularity of their ruling or the fear that they will be subject to partisan attacks,” he said. “That would be horrible.”

9 Responses to “Republican powerhouses urge GOP to leave Supreme Court justices alone”

  1. fairandbalanced Says:

    GOP bosses? I am an Executive Committee Member of the GOP and I have never even heard of these clowns! We’re moving ahead with our effort to remove these three liberal Justices.

  2. Erin Says:

    Fairandbalanced: if you’ve never heared of these 3, you don’t know party history. Might want to take a step back & do some research. These people know of what they speak.

  3. T. J. Ewing Says:

    Yeah right, they are “libral justices” if they don’t vote down unconstitutional laws proposed by right wing GOP/Teabagger legislators. Just another attempt by the GOP/Teabaggers to force their right wing Nazi fascist B.S. down everyone’s throat. You are NOT fooling ANYBODY with this recall nonsense!

  4. Searcher Says:

    This may be the straw that broke the camel’s back. If people think the Court is POLITICAL, they will trust the Legislature and Governor even less. But, go ahead and try to control everything……

  5. phil ryan Says:

    We can yell and scream at these know-nothing teabaggers, but the fact remains that we have allowed this sort of creep to continue by our voting in time and time again Republicans to the legislature in large numbers. This legislature is a bunch of dim bulb jokes and we are the ones who elected the clowns, so we must be dimmer than they are.

  6. Fed Up Says:

    Why doesn’t the Republican party just declare the Florida constitution void and do what they want? I agree with TJ Ewing well said!

  7. JOhn Says:

    “Fair & Balanced”: So, you have necver heard of the justices, but you are in favor of voting them out? Well, thought through I see. How can you cast a responsible vote or, for that matter reach a reasoned decision if, as you say, you have never heard of the justices? That said, your comment certainly gives insight into why you sit on the executive committee for the GOP.

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