Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Judicial Election Issue

With elections upcoming next week I thought it appropriate to link a story from Rankin County of a judicial candidate, Richard Redfern, who has been ordered to immediately stop running ‘misleading’ ads. This order was propounded by the Special Committee on Judicial Election Campaign Intervention which was created by the Mississippi Supreme Court for a case just like this one.

The article states Redfern uses the term “Judge Richard Redfern Chancery Judge”. Redfern is currently a Justice Court Judge in Rankin County so I do not see why there should be a lot of discussion about him using the title Judge before his name. A Justice Court Judgeship is an elected position that disposes of numerous complaints and quarrels and quite honestly handles as many cases, if not more than the more typical circuit or chancery court judges. As for the part of the statement, Chancery Judge, I believe Redfern may be in violation of what he can do here and more appropriately should have put “for Chancery Judge”. I, however, do not think Redfern’s signs are as misleading as his opponents or the articles makes it sound as the couple of signs I have actually seen around Rankin County have something to the effect of Vote Judge Richard Redfern and then below and in smaller type Chancery Judge. Also I do not know if this was even brought up before the committee but virtually every time an incumbent candidate runs for another term the words “re-elect” are plastered all over the advertisements.

For a modicum of fairness I feel like I should say that Redfern’s opponents in the race are Dan Fairly and Randy Clark, both who are quoted in the linked article and appear to also be qualified for the job. There is actually one of these signs up near my house, if it is still there when I get off work tonight I will try and swing by and take a picture of it for the blog.

*** After further investigation all of Redfern's signs near my house do say for Chancery Judge and as such seem perfectly fine to me. Additionally, both Dan Fairly's and Randy Clark's signs say "for Chancery Judge" so I am completely perplexed as to what the beef is with Redfern and why the Committee ruled the way it did. - Edited 11/1/06

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