2017 U. Ill. L. Rev. Online 22 (2017)
A Proposal to Select Illinois Appellate and Supreme Court Justices

handle is hein.journals/uilro2017 and id is 30 raw text is: 















A PROPOSAL TO SELECT ILLINOIS

APPELLATE AND SUPREME COURT

JUSTICES


                                                           Peter  C. Alexander*
                                                        George   M.  Vineyard**



      In Illinois and twenty   other states, appellate-level  judges  are elected
by  popular  vote.'  While  this method of determining who will become a
reviewing-court judge is not inherently problematic, there has been a
decades-long outcry to reform the selection process in the Land of Lin-
coln and  in many   other jurisdictions.2
      For  years, critics have  argued   that merit  selection  of judges   would
produce an independent, impartial and able judiciary and that the
election  of judges  is, among  other  things, bad  for business.4  Within   the
past  decade,  experts   and  voters  alike  have  also  criticized the  influx of





    *   Visiting Professor, University of Arkansas-Little Rock William H. Bowen School of Law.
B.A., Political Science, Southern Illinois University Carbondale; J.D., Northeastern University. I thank
Professors Christopher Behan, Mark Brittingham, and the late William Schroeder and Dean Paul
McGreal for their wisdom and helpful suggestions early in the research and writing stages. I also thank
Professor Stephanie Farrior for her research support and I thank my research assistants Paul Alexan-
der II, Nicholas Antonacci, Ryan Dattilo, Timothy Hudgspeth, Mykisha Jordan, Justin Macke, and
Madison Pitts for their excellent researching, writing, citation, and editing support over the many years
it took to complete this article.
   **   George M. Vineyard, Assistant Vice President of Institutional Effectiveness, St. Louis Col-
lege of Pharmacy. B.A., Psychology, M.S. Education, Ph.D. Statistics and Measurement, Southern Illi-
nois University Carbondale.
    1.  State-by-State Summary of Judicial Selection, USLEGAL, http://courts.uslegal.com/selection-
of-j udges/state-by-state-summary-of-j udicial-selection (last visited Oct. 1, 2017).
    2.  For a helpful history lesson regarding the selection/election of state-court judges, see Glenn
R. Winters, Selection ofJudges-An Historical Introduction, 44 TEX. L.R. 1081 (1966).
    3.  ROBERT W.  BERGSTROM, THE CONTINUING  EFFORT TO CREATE  NONPARTISAN JUDICI-
ARIES IN THE STATE COURTS 2 (2001); see also Woodward v. Alabama, 134 S. Ct. 405, 408 (2013) (So-
tomayor, J., dissenting) (What could explain Alabama judges' distinctive proclivity for imposing death
sentences in cases where a jury has already rejected that penalty? ... The only answer that is supported
by empirical evidence is [that] Alabama judges, who are elected in partisan proceedings, appear to
have succumbed to electoral pressures.).
    4.  Buck Wargo, Former U.S. Supreme Court justice says appointed judges better for business,
LAS VEGAS  SUN, (Sept. 22, 2010), http://www.lasvegassun.com/news/2010/sep/22/former-us-supreme-
court-justice-says-appointed-jud; see also Judith Maute, Selecting Justice in State Courts: The Ballot Box
or the Back Room?, 41 S. TEX. L. REv. 1197 (2000).


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