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11 Republicans switch votes, give bill new life

Proving that nothing is ever dead at the N.C. General Assembly, the Senate revived a measure to keep the Judicial Standards Commission's reprimands of judges secret.

The Senate voted down the measure a week ago, led by prominent Republicans who joined forces with Democrats, citing transparency concerns.

But 11 Republican senators switched votes Thursday when the bill resurfaced, approving it 28 to 14. The 11 who voted against it before they voted for it: Tom Apodaca, Chad Barefoot, Tamara Barringer, Kathy Harrington, Brent Jackson, Wesley Meredith, Louis Pate, Ron Rabon, Jeff Tarte, Tommy Tucker and Trudy Wade.

Now reprimands of judges won't be made public unless the N.C. Supreme Court concurs and makes it public. The measure (HB652) now goes back to the House, where a different version won unanimous approval earlier this year.


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INFO SHOULD BE PUBLIC

We, the public vote for judges, therefore, the information/any complaints and findings should be made public. They don't hesitate to make complaints against the Governor, Legislature's, Senators, the President, etc., why would all information (complaints) regarding elected judges not be made public.

Not many people go and sit in a courtroom and observe what a judge does, with the majority of the public voting for the ones they see the most pictures of along the road. This isn't right. Here in Carteret County I've observed "Illegal Procedures" by a specific judge. I've also known of a situation whereby a local attorney was under "Suspension" by the N.C. State Bar and the Judges knew this, yet they allowed him to continue representing clients before them, and did nothing to advise the client and or the public. Any action against a Judge or Attorney should be published in the local newspaper by the Bar making the public aware.

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