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Ben Glass
Ben Glass
Attorney • (703) 584-7277

IMPROPER QUESTIONS FOR FUTURE JUDGE?

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In Virginia we do not elect our trial judges in terms of a popular election. Rather, they are selected by the Virginia General Assembly and approved by the Governor. Recently, a judge being interviewed for one of the vacant judgeships in Norfolk contends that the republican state senator interviewing her asked her questions having nothing to do with her qualifications to be a judge.

Mary G. Commander, alleged in emails that she widely distributed that Virginia Senator Nick Rerras, a Norfolk republican, told her that in order to improve her chances of becoming a judge in the future she should “work on” her philosophy and become involved in the republican party.

She also alleged that Rerras asked her questions about her personal philosophies regarding abortion and told her that he was looking for “pro-life” judges. She also alleges that he encouraged her to get her friends and relatives to contribute to the Republican Party (since as a judge in Virginia you cannot be involved in partisan politics).

Comment from Virginia personal injury attorney Ben Glass:

It is hard to tell where this will go but it is good that Mary Commander has again brought this issue to light. Political partisanship has absolutely no place in the selection of qualified judges in Virginia.