Lawmaker asks would-be SC judges about ‘Supreme Being,’ gay marriage, equal pay for women

Feb 3, 2015

By Cassie Cope

A Republican S.C. House member wants to know about the “personal relationship” that would-be state judges have with the “Supreme Being,” whether they would perform a gay marriage and how they would rule if a woman sued for equal pay.

“Those things … would give an indication of how … they see the world, and how you see the world is going to have everything to do with how you see law, and how a judge should treat law,” said state Rep. Jonathon Hill, who issued the 30-question survey.

State staffers quickly squelched the survey as improper.

Candidates for judgeships are barred ethically from responding to some of the questions, said University of South Carolina law school ethics expert Greg Adams, referencing the state’s Code of Judicial Conduct.


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12 comments on “Lawmaker asks would-be SC judges about ‘Supreme Being,’ gay marriage, equal pay for women

  • @OP – State staffers quickly squelched the survey as improper.

    Candidates for judgeships are barred ethically from responding to some of the questions, said University of South Carolina law school ethics expert Greg Adams, referencing the state’s Code of Judicial Conduct.

    Hey! this is considering expertise on law!!

    You can’t expect faith-thinking politicians to research and understand the ethics of codes of conduct or laws!

    Judgements need to be made on how you FEEL they fit with your god-delusions (allegedly)!

    BTW: – Why does he think there is a need for legislators, if judges make
    up laws according to how they FEEL?



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  • 2
    Lorenzo says:

    I wonder if this Jonathon Hill plonks around in a late-medieval armour when he can dress casually… You know, for coherence.



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  • Even if the official survey was quashed, the flare has been sent up and has been seen.
    Ethical, serious candidate SC judges will not venture to comment.
    But there’s a danger that at least one might answer the survey unofficially through back channels (especially if they’re not a front runner).

    Given that presumably all the candidates are ‘good enough’ in terms of legal ability, or they wouldn’t be candidates, who then would get the RP nod: one of the majority of candidates who remained silent, or the hypothetical office seeker who unofficially gave the all right answers to the survey?



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  • It is curious that the right often appear to have little respect for the professionalism of the institutions of the law and the judiciary. Very many are quite unschooled in the problem of the tyranny of the majority. Law making for them is so often merely about what the majority want. Elected representatives in their callow populist enthusiasms may enact crass laws but at least a properly independent judiciary drawn from the brightest we have, made expert, and schooled in the necessary due diligence may mitigate such crassness and bring a greater steadiness by this engine of societal fairness..

    I say send in Ted Olson to put them straight. I say all elected representatives who have law making and judicial influence be required to have a week’s training in the US legal system. Set an exam. Fail those who don’t get it.

    These people are keen to sweep away the checks and balances we have developed over the centuries, in order to have more seemless influence over the masses under the cloak of populism. Demagoguery crumbles Jefferson’s wall and picks away at the institutions of the law.

    Where are all those old school Republicans who understood this stuff? Last I saw was Alan Alda in the West Wing. (Couldn’t even find a Republican to play him…)



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  • phil rimmer Feb 4, 2015 at 4:22 am

    I say send in Ted Olson to put them straight. I say all elected representatives who have law making and judicial influence be required to have a week’s training in the US legal system. Set an exam. Fail those who don’t get it.

    The catch with this is that you could get representatives who are lawyers who nothing about any other subject! (Whoops! percentages??) –
    Perhaps even from Liberty University School of Law!!! ?????



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  • The catch with this is that you could get representatives who are lawyers who [know] nothing about any other subject!

    Well then. This is a step forward. At least they know about one thing…

    Liberty U.? They still gotta passs the test.



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  • 10
    System Marked Down says:

    If I was asked to answer these questions, besides my name, I would answer “depends” to all of them. Because, you know, a questionnaire is not a way to deliberate.



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  • He is a Tea Party Republican who’s campaign platform was based on fundamentalist christian principles. So, it is no surprise that he would put out a questionnaire containing those ludicrous questions. What is frightening though, is that people voted for him and he won the election. Does not speak well of the reasoning abilities and decision making considerations of the people of South Carolina. Is it too late to allow them a successful secession?



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  • I wish I could say “only in South Carolina” but, sadly, that’s not the case. South Carolina does seem to be particularly infested with this kind of wannabe theocratism though.



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