Saturday, January 12, 2008

What Kind of People Want to Change the Missouri Plan?

Blog CCP has an incredible and horrifying post about Representative Jim Lembke, the lead opponent of the Missouri Plan. If anyone in Missouri was tempted to believe that the Republican attacks on the Missouri Plan were motivated by anything other than a rabid desire to inject partisan politics into the courthouse.

Representative Lembke has a Republican buddy whose son getting an ugly divorce in Laclede County, and he wants to bully the judge. He's tried to get the judge impeached. He's written to her, even though he has no more official role in the case than you or I do, demanding that she remove herself from his friend's case. He's gone so far beyond the bounds of acceptable behavior that even his Republican cohort from Laclede County has called Lembke out on it, raising questions about Lembke's ethics and pointing out that "I feel its not our responsibility to look over a judge's shoulder every two or three minutes and make a claim they're using their bench for oppression."

Let's be crystal clear about what Lembke is trying to do here. He's trying to use political influence to help a buddy in court. He wants to make sure that his political friend gets what he wants. He wants politically connected people to get special favors. He wants the Judicial Branch to run on backroom connections just the way the legislature does. You scratch my back, I'll scratch yours.

Ironically, Judge Hutson is not even covered by the Missouri Plan. Judge Hutson was elected by the voters, as a Democrat in a county that went for Bush by a 2:1 margin in 2004. She's clearly a great judge and a fine person - she even has a Republican representative backing her up.

Lembke wants the judiciary to work the way the legislature does - dominated by money, partisanship and political influence. Do you?

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

this is a lame issue

a pox on both your houses

1/13/2008 11:41 AM  
Blogger whistleblower said...


LOL (sorry but to describe this as "horrifying" just made me laugh). I'm surprised that I didn't hear screams of horror throughout the state. While most of your posts are quite eloquent, I found the title of this one to be somewhat satirical. Thanks for the chuckle.

I think you're wrong. I'm pretty sure that Claire Noland is the daughter, not the son, of Jim Noland. I could be wrong. Claire could be a man's name, and they could be a gay couple that were legally married in another state.

Judge Hutson, though not under the Missouri Plan for selection, was appointed by Gov. Holden in 2001 to fill a newly created position for the associated circuit in Laclede County. She ran as an incumbent against Jon Morris-R in 2006 and won. While I know of no good reason for her not to be on the bench, winning as an incumbent is more the norm than a triumphant victory.

I commented more on the original post at Blog CCP.

1/13/2008 12:33 PM  
Blogger Dan said...

Whistleblower -

So, you're okay with the kind of behavior exhibited by Lembke? You think that different justice for special people is a goal for Missouri's bench?

I don't think that's an LOL matter, myself.

1/13/2008 1:40 PM  
Blogger whistleblower said...


Please read my comment on CCP. It's kind of a waste of time to discuss the same subject on two different blogs; don't you agree?

1/13/2008 6:23 PM  
Anonymous Fly on the Wall said...

Ah, the "non partisan" plan!

Well, if the Mo Bar is involved, you can be sure there is no stinking bank room politics going on.

No siree!

Lawyers are honest, they would not do anything like discuss politics with a sitting judge just before, for example, a pre trial conference.

No way, Jose!

They are GOOD people!!!

1/13/2008 11:55 PM  
Blogger whistleblower said...


"they would not do anything like discuss politics with a sitting judge just before, for example, a pre trial conference"

It would appear that you are dying to say something. (flies have such a short lifespan) Please post or e-mail.

Dan... I'm sorry. I don't want to stir the proverbial pot, but if I didn't ask Fly to expand on this statement, you would really have to question my integrity.

1/14/2008 8:15 PM  
Anonymous Stop Lembke said...

Citing his attack on the state’s judiciary and values out of touch with Missourians, the Committee to Stop Lembke was created to oppose the election of Jim Lembke to the State Senate. Rep. Jim Lembke proposed eliminating the Missouri Nonpartisan Court Plan, which has protected Missouri courts for nearly seven decades by requiring the selection of judges based on merit rather than on political affiliation. Learn more here:

7/18/2008 3:35 PM  

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