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Author Topic: SENATE BILL: Judicial Term Length Amendment (Failed)  (Read 1734 times)
Senator North Carolina Yankee
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« on: July 22, 2012, 01:08:06 pm »
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Amendment to Article II the Third Constitution: Judicial Term Length

Section 1: The Supreme Court
1.    The judicial power of the Republic of Atlasia shall be vested in one Supreme Court.
2.    The Supreme Court shall consist of three Justices who shall all be registered voters, one of whom shall be the Chief Justice. Justices shall hold their office during good behavior.
3.    The Supreme Court shall be the sole body in the Forum with the authority to nullify or void federal laws. The Supreme Court shall only be able to nullify or void a federal law in the event that the federal law explicitly contradicts the Constitution.
4.    The Supreme Court shall have authority to nullify or void regional laws. The Supreme Court shall only be able to nullify or void a regional law in the event that the regional law explicitly contradicts the Constitution.
5.    The Supreme Court shall arbitrate in all disputes concerning federal elections.
6.    A Supreme Court Justice's term shall last 3 years or until the Justice decides to retire. The President may re-appoint a Justice after the 3 year term has expired.

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« Last Edit: August 06, 2012, 03:26:29 pm by Senator North Carolina Yankee »Logged

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Senator North Carolina Yankee
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« Reply #1 on: July 22, 2012, 01:09:28 pm »
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TJ you have 24 hours as you know to advocate for this. If I forget to mention this on a bill, assume it applies because it certainly will, most likely. Tongue
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Governor TJ
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« Reply #2 on: July 22, 2012, 06:48:24 pm »
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In Atlasia having lifetime appointments does not make much sense because we run on a condensed time scale from real life. A 3-year term is the equivalent of serving 36 years in real life. But here justices do not age correspondingly fast, so it can put the Supreme Court position essentially out of play. The scarcity of cases the Supreme Court regularly hears coupled with long tenures makes the court a mostly forgotten aspect of the game. Having a term limit would cause some level of turnover and interest in the office, but I also want to make a limit long enough that  the Supreme Court is not politicized.
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Scott
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« Reply #3 on: July 22, 2012, 06:53:16 pm »
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I like the concept of this bill, but I think that even three years is a bit long for someone to be holding the same position.

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6.    A Supreme Court Justice's term shall last 3 years 1 year or until the Justice decides to retire. The President may re-appoint a Justice after the 3 year 1 year term has expired.
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« Reply #4 on: July 22, 2012, 07:02:30 pm »
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Well, I'd agree with Scott that if we're going to do this, it needs to be 1 year. To give people an idea, with this amendment, someone who got appointed when I joined would just be facing possible reconfirmation this year. That's a looong time. Wink
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« Reply #5 on: July 22, 2012, 07:29:49 pm »
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My administration again comes out in opposition to the politicization of the Court.
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« Reply #6 on: July 22, 2012, 10:06:54 pm »
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I support Senator Scott's amendment proposal for this quite strongly.
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Senator North Carolina Yankee
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« Reply #7 on: July 23, 2012, 08:05:57 am »
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Quote from: Amendment 50:11 by Scott
6.    A Supreme Court Justice's term shall last 3 years 1 year or until the Justice decides to retire. The President may re-appoint a Justice after the 3 year 1 year term has expired.

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Senator North Carolina Yankee
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« Reply #8 on: July 23, 2012, 08:07:28 am »
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I am very reluctant to embrace this. In the RL I can assure you that it would only get passed over my dead body. Tongue


Only the perspective of this as a game and the inherent differences in that is making me somewhat open to being convinced here.
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« Reply #9 on: July 23, 2012, 09:33:02 am »
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If this is a measure designed to promote greater interest in the affairs of the judicial branch, I think it fails to address the real problem.  Indeed, this is not the first time we have considered fixed terms for judges; it was largely defeated on the basis of opposition to politicization of the Court, and there is merit to the argument that the prospect of renomination, or lack thereof, could alter the interpretations of justices in legal questions.
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« Reply #10 on: July 23, 2012, 12:48:33 pm »
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Accepted as friendly.
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Senator North Carolina Yankee
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« Reply #11 on: July 24, 2012, 09:45:14 am »
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Quote from: Amendment 50:11 by Scott
6.    A Supreme Court Justice's term shall last 3 years 1 year or until the Justice decides to retire. The President may re-appoint a Justice after the 3 year 1 year term has expired.

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My openness to being convinced took a big hit with Ebowed's post, just so the proponents of this know where I am right now. Wink If someone is suppose to sell me on this they aren't doing very well. Tongue
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« Reply #12 on: July 24, 2012, 10:45:47 am »
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Actions of the judiciary are inherently political, and interpretations of the law subjective in their correctness. Though it is convenient for us to think of judges as being impartial, they like all the rest of us are vulnerable to a wide array of biases and prejudices. It is an inescapable aspect of the human condition. To be clear, I don't want to see the court filled with hacks, but terms provide for us a means to encourage accountability to the general public, provide opportunities for government to reappraise which people are best qualified for the posts, and ensure those who serve on the bench are of the highest degree of competency, approach their duties with an excellent work ethic, and are culturally representative of the masses.

Will the process be flawed and to one extent or another politicized? Probably. But the process already in place is quite vulnerable to becoming that way as well, and in my humble opinion is prone to concentrating too much power for too long a time into the hands of certain individuals. That is not to suggest I would oppose any renewal of the commissions served by honorable Justice Ebowed or his colleagues. But there may come a day at some point down the road where it honestly seems the court would benefit from some new blood, so to speak. Surely this is not an unreasonable check to place on the power of the courts, no?
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Senator North Carolina Yankee
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« Reply #13 on: July 24, 2012, 11:04:12 am »
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I am not worried about checks on the power of the court, so much as preservation of the court as check on the legislative and executive branches and not becoming that of a rubber stamp to legislative or executive fiat.
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« Reply #14 on: July 24, 2012, 11:09:42 am »
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I'm not a big fan of all of this together. Although, I'm sure it would make some of the Presidential elections more intersting knowing that during that specific term, they can change up the court.

Still, I think it's better the way it is.
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Senator North Carolina Yankee
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« Reply #15 on: July 26, 2012, 08:04:07 am »
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The amendment has passed.
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« Reply #16 on: July 26, 2012, 01:37:47 pm »
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I've decided to oppose this.  There is a difference between expanding the Court and forcing Justices to be reappointed.  This bill would require Justices to essentially rule in a way that would please potential future Presidents, and I cannot support that.
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« Reply #17 on: July 26, 2012, 01:41:49 pm »
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I've decided to oppose this.  There is a difference between expanding the Court and forcing Justices to be reappointed.  This bill would require Justices to essentially rule in a way that would please potential future Presidents, and I cannot support that.

Would you change your opinion on this amendment if we were to, perhaps, prohibit justices from being reappointed for a period of time?
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« Reply #18 on: July 26, 2012, 01:46:47 pm »
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Would you change your opinion on this amendment if we were to, perhaps, prohibit justices from being reappointed for a period of time?

I'd consider it.  My number one goal is avoiding the politicization of the Court, whether that involves judicial elections or forcing Justices to cater to the political desires of a President.
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« Reply #19 on: July 26, 2012, 01:49:35 pm »
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TJ, your thoughts?
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Governor TJ
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« Reply #20 on: July 26, 2012, 06:03:38 pm »
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I am open to ruling out reappointments, but only if we make it longer than a year. It wouldn't necessarily need to be quite 3 years, but I think a year would be too short if we're going to forbid justices from staying on multiple terms.
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« Reply #21 on: July 26, 2012, 06:13:53 pm »
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Amendment:
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6.    A Supreme Court Justice's term shall last one year or until the Justice decides to retire.  The President may re-appoint a Justice two years after the Justice's term has expired.
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« Reply #22 on: July 26, 2012, 07:51:05 pm »
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Two years is an extremely long time; I am comfortable with an eight month interregnum.
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Marokai Besieged
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« Reply #23 on: July 26, 2012, 08:18:52 pm »
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What a terrible idea.
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Sbane
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« Reply #24 on: July 27, 2012, 02:53:07 am »
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Can we impeach justices? It seems like that is all the power the Senate should have.
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