Ed Dowd Writes in Support of Missouri Non-Partisan Courts Plan

St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Letters to the Editor

Keep politics out of our courts

Missouri courts do their jobs in a fair and impartial way without regard to partisan politics. The non-partisan court plan was instituted in Missouri in 1940 because of rampant voter fraud in the 1930s. Since then, most states have adopted what is called the Missouri Plan.

Under the Missouri Plan, a group of citizens and lawyers, chaired by a judge, selects a panel of three qualified individuals for the governor, who selects the person that is most qualified to serve as a judge. We have a very knowledgeable and experienced group of judges in St. Louis, St. Louis County, Kansas City and on the Appellate and Supreme courts of Missouri.

Now the Missouri Plan is under attack by people who want judges elected in partisan elections.

We do not want judges making promises to anyone about how they will rule if elected, or to engage in fundraising to raise millions of dollars to run a campaign.

No lawyer wants to appear in court against a lawyer who contributed thousands of dollars to the judge’s campaign. We do not want a system like Illinois, which has brutal, partisan elections of judges. It is not fair.

Let’s keep politics out of our courts. There are people seeking signatures to make our courts political and to make our judges run in partisan elections. Please refuse to sign any petition you see that will result in partisan, expensive, divisive elections of our judges.

The Missouri Plan has worked well for 70 years. Let’s save the Missouri Plan. We must protect our courts.

Edward L. Dowd — Clayton, Co-chairman, Citizens for Missouri Courts

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