Judicial Candidates Speak For the Voters

I did short interviews today with candidates for the appellate court positions.  Most voters know little about judicial candidates so I want to give you a good sense of who they are, their backgrounds, why they are running and the important issues.  Videos provide a sense of who each person is and, I hope, provide you with reasons to support them and elect them on November 3rd.

The state courts are a co-equal branch of government to the legislature and the Governor.  They are critically important to our lives and it is critically important we elect good, strong, honest people.  I have published previous interviews with Jack Panella and Anne Lazarus so today I focused on Robert Colville, Barbara Behrens Ernsberger and Kevin McCarthy.

State Judicial Results

I was deeply disappointed to see the people of northeastern Pennsylvania refuse to support Judge John Milton Younge.  I watched at state committee as they refused to endorse him for Superior Court so yesterday’s show of racial bigotry was not a surprise.  I’ve met fewer people in politics I’ve been more impressed than than Judge Younge.  A man of deep integrity, intellect and courage he stood for election to Superior Court.  Pennsylvania desperately needs appellate court judges of his caliber but until we see past the color of one’s skin we will remain deprived.  It is a shameless stain on the character of our Commonwealth.

Judge Anne Lazarus did gain the third nomination for Superior Court along with newcomer Kevin McCarthy and Robert Colville.  McCarthy is a fresh new face on the scene and I was impressed with him though I endorsed Lazarus, Younge and Colville.

Jack Panella gained the Supreme Court nomination while running unopposed.  Joan Orie Melvin will be his opponent.  She has been campaigning widely with her sister at her side which could harbor some interesting conflicts of interest.  Jane Orie is a powerful State Senator from Erie and, if you recall, it was the push from Supreme Court Justices which triggered the infamous pay raise fiasco.  A few years ago the state legislature passed a 37% pay increase after being duly pressured by these Justices.  If Orie Melvin is sitting on the Court how does she rule on matters affecting her sister and vice versa?  This raises serious ethical issues and questions.

In the Commonwealth Court election there weren’t many candidates I liked.  Jimmy Lynn is a Philadelphia political hack and acts like it every waking moment.  He has never seen an appellate court slot for which he hasn’t aspired.  Barbara Ernsberger was the sole candidate in either Party rated “not recommended” yet voters flocked to her.  This woman couldn’t campaign effectively at State Committee, how will she in a general election?