Thursday, October 16, 2008

Congratulations, Judge Zel Fischer

The Missouri Plan worked again yesterday, as Governor Matt Blunt chose one of three well-qualified candidates as his final appointment to the Missouri Supreme Court. Judge Fischer has served on the bench in Atchison County since 2006, after having served his community in a solo law shop for years.

I've known Judge Fischer for years, and he is going to be a fine member of the Supreme Court. I say that despite the fact that he and I are worlds apart in politics. Zel and I worked together on the Missouri Bar Young Lawyers Section, which gave us plenty of opportunity to sit around in the evening and discuss our views on various issues (as well as share a few laughs). Suffice it to say that we saw things differently. Despite the disagreements, though, we shared a respect for the judicial system and its role in society.

It says something positive about Zel and his approach to conflict that I was always enthusiastically invited up to Rock Port for a round of golf and a good steak. We were never going to be best of friends, but he was open-minded enough to invite this city liberal up for a good time. I wish I had taken him up on the offer.

Zel Fischer is a true conservative and a good man. While I suppose I could complain that the Supreme Court seat should go to someone closer to my own political philosophy, I respect the fact that Governor Blunt gets to pick the judges. Besides, political affiliation matters much less to me for a Supreme Court judge than does quality of mind and fidelity to the job of applying law to the facts of the case in front of the Court.

Congratulations to Judge Zel Fischer. Congratulations to Governor Matt Blunt - you got yourself a true conservative who will serve the Supreme Court long after you have left office. Congratulations to the Supreme Court nominating committee - you sent the Governor a panel with three excellent choices.

Most of all, though, congratulations to Missouri - you have once again benefitted from the best system for judicial appointments in the United States - the Missouri Plan.

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

I know Zel well, too. I've practiced with him (maybe I should say "against" him -- only once were we sitting on the same side in a case) for years. He's an excellent lawyer and a creative thinker. He knows the law and being opposite him is a challenge because he always knows all the angles. He'll be a wonderful addition to the court and I, too, am glad to have someone I know well sitting up there. He and I will also always disagree on fundamental political issues, but I trust Zel to be right in the decisions he makes.

10/16/2008 11:51 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

What is really funny is that you think you are fooling people into thinking there is no politics involved in even getting to the "three choices" in the first place.

You do realize that corruption is rampant in Jackson County, don't you?

That it is still going on in the municipal court especially?

Sure you do. Lots of lawyers do.

I am one of them.

Who ya kiddin, sport?

10/19/2008 5:05 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Could not have gone to a more deserving person. I know him from Mo Bar Young Lawyers' Section as well. Great temperment and legal mind. He also brings experience from both sides of the bench as well as good ol' fashion common sense!

10/19/2008 6:22 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Judge Fischer is a fair and impartial judge. Hopefully, his appointment will open up clerkship opportunities for recently graduated law students who are from Northwest Missouri.

10/24/2008 2:47 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The best choice for the supreme court I have ever heard of!

I think he is the best choice!

Congradulations ZEL!!!!!

1/05/2009 10:09 PM  

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