Voters could be asked to scrap the Missouri Non-Partisan Court Plan for a plan more closely resembling the federal judicial selection process.
Laura Egerdal with the Secretary of State’s office reports that the group ShowMe Better Courts has won approval of the ballot title and summary necessary to circulate petitions. That is the beginning of a long process to land on the November 2010 ballot. The group now will begin soliciting signatures throughout the state. It needs enough signatures from six of the state’s nine Congressional districts to make it on the ballot.
The group, associated with Better Courts for Missouri , would like Missouri to abandon the Missouri Plan adopted by voters in 1940. The plan uses a commission to submit nominees for appellate judges and certain circuit judges to the governor who makes the final selection. Better Courts for Missouri is pushing for Missouri to adopt the federal selection process in which the governor nominates and the state senate confirms or rejects.
This has been a busy year for the Secretary of State’s office. Sixty-four initiatives have been filed. Ten of those were withdrawn. Twenty-eight contained flaws and were rejected by the office. Of the initiatives proposed, 22 have been approved for circulation, but seven of those were withdrawn after being certified for circulation. The 64 submitted is a record. The previous record occurred in the 2007-2008 cycle when 55 were filed.