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Alabama: Supreme Court holds for electing a judge -- just not yet

The Talladega Daily Home reports: In a 7-2 decision published Friday, the Alabama Supreme Court voided the election of Chad Woodruff to the office of Circuit Judge Place 3, overturning a circuit court ruling from February.

Chief Justice Sue Bell Cobb and Justice Tom Parker dissented.

The majority of the court agreed the provision of a 2006 act filling the third judgeship by gubernatorial appointment rather than by an election was unconstitutional, but went on to find that the appointment language was severable from the rest of the act, meaning the office is to be filled by election in 2010. ...

During the 2006 regular session of the Legislature, a bill was introduced and passed that would further delay filling the position until 2009, when the governor would make an appointment based on the recommendation of the Talladega County Judicial Selection Committee. That candidate would then stand for election the following year.

Woodruff qualified for the office and was certified as the Democratic Party’s candidate after the 2006 act had passed both houses of the Legislature but before it had been signed into law by the governor. He ran unopposed that November and won more than 14,000 votes. -- Daily Home - State Supreme Court voids election of judge

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