A proposal to change the way Missouri’s top judges are picked crashed and burned Tuesday. But supporters gave up their campaign early. Opponents of the plan that would have given the governor more power in picking appeals court and supreme court judges say it would inject politics into a system that should focus on justice, not politics. They think backers of Amendment Three left the field when they saw it didn’t have a chance. And indeed, it didn’t. Seventy-six percent of the voters on Tuesday said “no.”
Former Missouri Bar president Skip Walther says the bar will fight the proposal if it comes back in some other form; supporters have indicate they’ll next push for direct election of judges.
Walther says a petition proposing direct election of judges failed badly in 2010. He thinks a similar effort would have the same result in the 2014 election if it’s proposed. He says backers of Amendment 3 would have had to spend millions of dollars “on a campaign of misinformation.”