Iowa JNC

What about an unpopular court decision?

There are several reasons why a voter may want to consider more than the outcome of one case when assessing a judge’s performance.  

  • Judges must follow the rule of law and sometimes this leads to unpopular results.  Under the rule of law, judicial decisions are based strictly upon the evidence presented to the court and the applicable laws set out in our statutes and constitution.  
  • If citizens disagree with a law or a judge's interpretation of a law, they can petition the legislature to change the law. 
  • Over the course of a career a judge may dispose of hundreds of cases or more.  One case alone is not necessarily an accurate barometer of a judicial career.   
  • High-profile cases that catch the media's attention often bear little resemblance to the cases that constitute the bulk of a judge's work.  Most court cases are not reported by the media and most do not involve hot-button issues.  

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