House defeats amendment to change judge selection method

Thursday, April 17, 2008 | 4:52 p.m. CDT; updated 3:23 a.m. CDT, Monday, July 21, 2008

JEFFERSON CITY — The House soundly defeated a constitutional amendment to change how state judges are picked.

Judges for the state Supreme Court, appeals courts and trial courts in the Kansas City and St. Louis areas are nominated by selection committees. Those committees are composed of a judge, lawyers chosen by the Missouri Bar and citizens nominated by the governor. The panels submit three potential nominees to the governor.

The House defeated 83-69 a measure that would have removed judges from selection committees, expanded membership and required Senate confirmation for members.

It also would have required that the committees hold open meetings and post the list of applicants for judicial openings on the state Supreme Court's Web site.

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