DECEMBER 03, 2008
Indicating that he’s more concerned with race and sex than merit, New York’s governor expressed outrage that the state’s judicial commission didn’t include enough minority or women candidates to nominate as chief judge.
As per New York’s Constitution, the governor must select a chief judge for the state’s High Court from a screened list provided by the Commission on Judicial Nomination. This week the panel gave Governor David Paterson seven highly qualified names to replace the retiring Judith Kaye as the chief judge of the state’s High Court.
The coveted list includes three highly regarded lawyers in private practice and four judges, including two from the Court of Appeals. But the governor publicly blasted the panel for not including any women or Hispanics. His complaint is that the seven candidates are men and only one is black.
Paterson joined forces with New York Attorney General Andrew Cuomo for a rare public chastising of the state judicial panel, saying that he was outraged. "It seems highly unusual that in a class of seven individuals considered to be capable of supervising the Court of Appeals that not one of them would be a woman, not one."
The governor appoints the members of the Commission on Judicial Nomination and in fact Paterson appointed one, attorney Frederick K. Brewington, shortly after replacing Eliot Spitzer who resigned in disgrace when he got busted in a hooker scandal.
Paterson has a few closet skeletons of his own. Shortly after moving into the governor’s mansion he admitted that he had multiple extramarital affairs with a series of women and illegally mingled campaign funds with his romantic engagements. In some instances he used campaign money to pay for hotel trysts with mistresses and to give the women cash.
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