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Judicial Politics in Texas

Partisanship, Money, and Politics in State Courts

Series:

Kyle Cheek and Anthony Champagne

In recent years, judicial elections have changed dramatically. The elections themselves have become increasingly partisan, interest group involvement in judicial races has escalated, recent court decisions have freed judicial candidates to speak more openly than ever before about their judicial ideologies, and the tenor of judicial campaigns has departed significantly from what were once low-key, sleepy affairs. This book examines the evolution of the new rough-and-tumble politics of judicial elections by focusing on Texas, a bellwether for the new judicial selection politics in America. The Texas experience illustrates what can – and usually will – go wrong when judges are elected, and lays the path for meaningful reforms to stem the tide of the new politics of judicial elections.