Choose Your Judges

Brennan Center for Justice Publishes Overview of State Supreme Court Elections

September 23rd, 2020

In a recent feature article, Douglas Keith of the Brennan Center for Justice highlights some significant features of this year’s state Supreme Court elections. Among them:

–Ohio and Michigan are two states in which the partisan majority could flip in 2020, which will likely result in higher levels of spending in these races.

–Dark money, which comes from Political Action Committees and similar organizations, made up 40% of the money spent in state supreme court elections in 2016. This ratio is likely to stay the same this time around. The Brennan Center estimates that less than 20% of this money is publicly traceable to its source.

–State Supreme Courts will continue to struggle with a diversity problem. Currently 23 states have all-white high courts, and six of them who are having an election this year offer only white candidates who are running.

The article also links to a useful map that indicates the different types of judicial selection processes used by each state.

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