Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Thomas Moyer: Not Such a Party Animal

Apparently I wasn't the only one discomforted by Ohio Supreme Court Justice Terrence O'Donnell's partisan cheerleading last month. SCOhio Chief Justice Thomas Moyer is as well. From OPENERS:

    "I would not have made those comments," Moyer said Monday during an Associated Press seminar. "A couple of us talked about it. He got caught up a bit. It's not too difficult to get caught up."

    Moyer said he also talked directly to O'Donnell about his comments and that he doesn't think O'Donnell will make such partisan remarks again.

    "We had a discussion about it, but that's not part of our open records policy," he told a room of journalists.
It's understandable, but Moyer is gentler on O'Donnell than I am:
    But Moyer also excused O'Donnell, blaming Ohio's partisan way of picking Supreme Court justices. Moyer said justices are forced to stay rooted to their political parties for fundraising and voter support if they expect to run for re-election someday.
I agree that general election of the Supreme Court is a pox on the State. But the fact that a system is bad because it opens the door to improper behavior doesn't make that behavior any less improper. O'Donnell gave the speech in reponse to an invitation by Mahoning Republicans. This wasn't some off-the-cuff remark. This was O'Donnell choosing to pick up the party standard and lead the charge. And O'Donnell isn't some newly appointed muni court magistrate getting a little too full of himself. He's a Supreme Court Justice and should have known better.