NC lawmakers override Gov. Cooper’s veto on judicial elections
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) – The Latest on efforts by the North Carolina General Assembly to override Gov. Roy Cooper’s veto of a judicial elections bill (all times local):
The Republican-controlled General Assembly has officially cancelled Democratic Gov. Roy Cooper’s first veto, meaning elections for local trial judges will become officially partisan again starting next year.
The Senate completed the veto override Thursday, one day after the House held a similar vote. At least three-fifths of the members voting in each chamber had to agree to override.
The new governor last week vetoed the measure that would put party affiliations of candidates running for Superior Court and District Court on ballots. Candidates also would be chosen in partisan primaries.
Cooper said the bill damages recent efforts to distance the work of judges from politics.
Judicial races became nonpartisan in the 1990s and 2000s, but now that’s been reversed. The legislature made appellate court races partisan again in December.
It looks like all judicial elections in North Carolina will be officially partisan again, with the Republican-controlled General Assembly poised to override Democratic Gov. Roy Cooper’s veto of a bill addressing trial court races.
The Senate scheduled Thursday an override vote on the measure that in 2018 would put on ballots the party affiliations of candidates running for Superior Court and District Court. Candidates would be chosen in partisan primaries. The House already voted Wednesday to cancel Cooper’s veto. Republicans hold 35 of the 50 Senate seats.
All judicial races used to be partisan affairs a generation ago, but they shifted over time to become officially nonpartisan. Last December, the legislature made appellate court races partisan again.
Cooper says the bill would reverse efforts to distance the courtroom from politics.
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