Bob Rush Fights to Keep Politics Out of Our Legal System

November 26, 2019 Nov 26 2019
Iowa Court of Appeals in the Iowa Judicial Branch Building. Photo courtesy Google Maps.

On November 6th, Bob Rush appeared in front of the Iowa Court of Appeals. He argued against April 2019 changes to the way Iowa chooses Supreme Court Judges that would introduce party politics into our legal system. Supreme Court judges have the final say on many of our most important laws. Rush believes balance and fairness is important.

How Iowa Chose Judges

Prior to the changes in April, a commission of non-partisan Iowans chose three potential judges for the governor to pick from. To form the commission, the governor chose eight members, Iowa lawyers chose the other eight, and the remaining was a senior member of the Iowa Supreme Court.

Why the Process Matters

The changes, approved despite arguments against them, let the governor choose nine of the seventeen commission members who choose nominees. This means the governor can appoint a majority of the group to be in line with their political views. The group could then select only nominees also in line with the governor’s political views. This could tip the balance of the court in favor of whatever political party is in power.

Rush and a group of eleven lawyers and legislators voiced their concerns to the Iowa Court of Appeals. The judges haven’t ruled on the outcome yet.

Rush Fights for Iowans

Although many Iowans did not know about this change, Rush fought on our behalf to keep politics out of our courts.

“We submit this affects every Iowan, whether you live in the country or in town. You are affected,” Rush told the panel of judges.

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