The October 27 fundraiser for Judge Robin D. Shoffner has been canceled, according to email received.
A number of readers commented that a judicial candidate can not raise funds for the 2018 Primary until some time closer to the 2018 Primary (see, Supreme Court Rule 67(B)(2)).
I didn't know that... but, then, I'm neither an election lawyer nor a candidate.
Of course, as my ever-vigilant readers know, judicial candidates can not solicit campaign funds themselves; this is to be left in the hands of "committees of responsible persons." The committees should educate themselves on the distinctions between fundraising for campaigns generally and fundraising for judicial campaigns... but it is evident here that plans were advanced before committee members were properly educated.
This no doubt embarrasses the candidate, but it should not necessarily reflect badly on the candidate herself.
I am not privy to the specifics in this case, certainly, but I have discussed the philosophy of fundraising generally over the years with a number of judicial candidates. Some candidates want to be completely insulated from any knowledge of how campaign funds are generated, or from whom. Others insist on being intimately involved, the thought being that the candidate can help identify any inappropriate, improper, or questionable donors or donations. Still another group tries to stake out a middle ground, relying on their committees to spot problem donors or donations, and bring questions about these to the candidate, but otherwise trying to stay largely above the fray. In all of these cases, candidates have told me they are trying to ensure, to the extent possible, that their independence can not be called into question.
The one lesson I think we can draw from this unfortunate situation is that campaign committees need to have direct access to a candidate's election lawyer.
Newly elected downstate judge benched after parolee-roommate arrested for murder - Ronald Duebbert, pictured at right, was elected to the Circuit Court in the far Downstate 20th Judicial Circuit just this past November. He began his judi...
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