I am going to insist that Texas Supreme Court Chief Justice Nathan Hecht keep the pressure on the Texas Legislature to move toward a fundamental change in the way we elect our judges.
He wants to make the office a non-partisan one. He dislikes the idea of electing judges as Republicans or Democrats. He says he favors a merit selection system in which judges can stand for “retention” at the ballot box.
It is music to my ears. I’ve been yammering about this kind of reform for as long as I have lived in Texas; that dates back nearly 35 years.
I applaud Chief Justice Hecht for repeating his call for judicial election reform. He has raised this issue before. I hope he keeps the heat turned up.
Hecht, of course, is motivated largely because so many of his fellow Republican judges got drummed out of office in the 2018 midterm election. They lost because of the surge of enthusiasm among Texas Democrats. I am not one bit concerned about his reason for reiterating his demand for change in the electoral system. He and I are on the same page.
I want the Legislature to listen carefully to the state’s chief justice and act on his request.