Thursday, August 29, 2013
Courts - "Iowa governor declines comment on 'inappropriate' judicial questions"
This long story from the DesMoines Register, reported by Jason Clayworth, begins:
Gov. Terry Branstad has declined comment about two of his judicial nominating appointees who publicly asked questions to judicial applicants about covenant vows and church involvement.There are videos of two of the applicants responding to questions.
And that silence is unfortunate because it could help maintain the integrity of Iowa’s judicial selection process, critics contend.
“I think it would be wise for the govern to basically say ‘Let’s clearly understand the parameters of what the judicial nominating commission is supposed to be seeking,’” said Jeff Angelo, a former senator who is now chairman of the group Republicans for Freedom, which advocates for individual liberty in marriage rights for same-sex couples.
Angelo continued: “It doesn’t surprise me he declined comment because he’s not a micro manager but at the same time I would guess he hopes this is an isolated incident that sort of resolves itself.”
The Register asked Branstad Tuesday to respond to questions about the issue. Today Tim Albrecht, a spokesman for the governor, said the governor is declining to speak about the issue.
The questions were made last week to two of 22 candidates seeking to become a judge on the Iowa Court of Appeals.
The question about covenant vows was made from nominating commissioner Scott Bailey, a vice president of the Network of Iowa Christian Home Educators from Otley, to Jeanie Vaudt, an assistant Iowa attorney general.
The question about church involvement came from nominating commissioner Elizabeth Doll of Council Bluffs, who asked applicant Jennifer Miller to “comment on her methodology of choosing a place of worship.”
Critics contend those types of questions are inappropriate and pollute the separation of church and state.
Posted by Marcia Oddi on August 29, 2013 02:13 PM
Posted to Courts in general