This November, voters will decide whether to retain in office three justices of the Florida Supreme Court and fifteen judges of the district courts of appeal. This Essay explains the merit retention process and puts that process in historical context. It analyzes the challenges voters face in making decisions about whether to retain appellate court judges and highlights The Florida Bar’s role in educating voters about merit retention. The Florida constitution entrusts the important decision whether to retain appellate court judges, including supreme court justices, to the voters, and in order to make that decision, voters must be informed about the judicial role in American democracy.
January 2015, Vol. 67, No. 1
Reid Kress Weisbord, Trust Term Extension