Democratic Gov. Bev Perdue has named a panel to help screen judicial candidates, but Republicans immediately criticized it as being too laden with partisan Democrats.
The governor named an 18-member commission, including two people who have served as her lawyers, to advise her on whom to appoint to the bench. The commission will forward three names for the governor to choose from for each vacancy on the N.C. Supreme Court, the N.C. Court of Appeals and Superior Court. (At least nine of the 18 members are ardent Democrats.)
In announcing the creation of the commission last April, Perdue said the Judicial Nominating Commission was an effort to provide well-qualified and fair judges. "There is no place for politics when it comes to choosing the state's most honored and influential legal servants," Perdue said at the time.
But Republicans said the makeup of the panel belies Perdue's words.
"Perdue has chosen to stack the commission with political cronies, Democratic operatives and liberal partisan politicians," said Scott Laster, executive director of the state GOP. "This type of 'bipartisan, for-the-people facade' would make a tyrant blush." Read more here.