Is Idaho Supreme Court really Nonpartisan?
By Shari Dovale
What does it mean to be ‘Nonpartisan’? Nonpartisan words and actions are not supposed to show allegiance to any political party. They are to be politically neutral.
Is that realistic? Not generally. Everyone has an opinion, and Supreme Court candidates are no different. Their viewpoints will have an affect on their decisions. Again, it is expected. That is why you will find partisan groups heavily investing in select candidates.
There are two candidates running for the Idaho Supreme Court. Senator Curt McKenzie is a conservative Republican and Robyn Brody is a liberal trial lawyer.
The position calls for a non-partisan approach to the law. However, as a voter, I absolutely want to know how these candidates view the issues because I know that it can weigh heavily on decisions that come before them.
We had a chance to sit down with Senator McKenzie recently. He has made himself available to voters all over the state, not shying away from the issues and allowing citizens to get to know him.
He is a conservative Republican, strong on gun rights and very pro-life. He is not afraid to admit his conservative roots. This is important to many voters, especially in the strong red state of Idaho. He has a long list of conservative credentials in the Idaho Senate.
Robyn Brody has not discussed her views on the issues, continuing to tout her credentials in the legal field. She does have experience in litigation, but where does she stand on Constitutional issues?
McKenzie was hesitant to discuss his opponents positions, so it is up to the voting public to verify the facts. It is admirable that he refuses to get drawn into an ugly campaign, but it is important to understand both candidates. I have found that in a staunchly conservative state, a candidate that does not want to discuss any actual issues is generally very liberal.
Brody’s bio/resume does not mention the issues. Her webpage does not mention the issues. I have not found responses from her on abortion, gun rights, or other Constitutional issues. The liberal media is being very kind to her, asking her softball questions and steering away from anything controversial.
That tells me a lot.
The liberal media raves on her ability to raise donations. That is a big thing, but, where are the donations coming from? In looking over her reported contributions, I see several from out of state, multiple corporations, and lots of law firms. These large donations have a habit of coming back to a candidate, sometimes in the form of favors due. I always get concerned when I see that much from any particular group or organization.
I will do more research, as I hope you will. However, with the importance that I place on the Constitution, I need a candidate that knows the Constitution.
McKenzie has shared his admiration of Justice Antonin Scalia and how he considered him a mentor to his own views. He believes that the US Constitution is not a living document. It is not there for random interpretation. This is important to me and, I hope, to the voters in Idaho.
If you have not yet met the candidates, I recommend that you take the time to do so. McKenzie has been widely available throughout the state. Brody has not yet made it to a venue near me. Remember to ask them the hard questions. They should be happy to answer them.
Nonpartisan is a fallacy. The candidates views make a difference!
Be involved in who will be on your Supreme Court!