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Wed Oct 30, 2013, 02:55 PM

 

New Poll: Vast Majority of Voters Fear Campaign Cash Skews Judges' Decisions

The People are awakening ....


http://www.brennancenter.org/press-release/new-poll-vast-majority-voters-fear-campaign-cash-skews-judges-decisions

WASHINGTON, D.C. - A new poll commissioned by the Brennan Center for Justice and Justice at Stake finds that an overwhelming number of voters believe campaign donations and other special interest spending on judicial elections have an influence on a judge’s decision on the bench. The findings were released today at a National Press Club event highlighting a new report by the groups, The New Politics of Judicial Elections 2011-12: How New Waves of Special Interest Spending Raised the Stakes for Fair Courts.

“As this poll makes clear, Americans are worried that our fair courts are at risk,” said Alicia Bannon, counsel in the Democracy Program at the Brennan Center for Justice. “We need stricter rules for when judges have to step aside from cases, so that judges aren’t hearing cases involving donors who spent large sums getting them elected. We also need stronger disclosure laws so the public knows who is spending money trying to shape our courts.”

“These numbers are the highest we’ve seen in years of polling on this question,” said Bert Brandenburg, Executive Director of Justice at Stake. “Almost 9 in 10 Americans believe that campaign cash is affecting courtroom decisions. They’re worried that justice is for sale.”

The poll asked about campaign donations made directly to judges’ campaigns as well as about “independent spending,” in which outside groups spend their own money on TV ads and other election materials for or against a judicial candidate. A full 87 percent of voters said they believed both kinds of spending have either “some” or “a great deal” of influence on judges’ decisions.



Poll results here.

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