Choosing which judge to vote for can be a complete mystery to the average voter, who has no real way to know a judge’s temperament or point of view. Short of sitting down to read actual opinions of each judge, an impossibly time-consuming task, how do you choose? Even worse, what should be done when a judge retires mid-term?
If you’ve ever wondered how a judge becomes a judge, the Governor’s office has a page explaining the process followed to choose mid-term judges. Generally, lawyers sit on committees for the Washington State Bar Association, local county bar associations, and various special-interest or minority bar associations and review application materials and interview potential judicial candidates. The committee recommendations are then passed on to the Governor’s office (or, as appropriate, to the voters) for a final selection.
So what makes a good trial judge, or a good appellate judge? We are pleased to announce that Matt Albrecht has been selected to sit on the Washington State Bar Association’s Judicial Recommendations Committee. Matt would love to know your thoughts on this topic if you’ve ever wanted to have a say in the process. Please, leave your feedback telling us how you would choose a judge if you were the Governor and why.