Thursday, February 11, 2016

Bernie Sanders v. The ABA’s Code of Judicial Conduct

Bernie Sanders is not only attacking our freedom of speech but he is proposing to do so in a manner that directly contradicts the most basic of judicial tenets. Justices cannot bind themselves to decide a case before it is before them. This is a basic tenet of judicial ethics.
The ABA’s Code of Judicial Conduct - Canon 2, Rule 2.4(b) states the issue at hand very clearly:

(B) A judge shall not permit family, social, political, financial, or other interests or relationships to influence the judge’s judicial conduct or judgment.

Judges refrain from speaking about topics that are currently before the court for just this reason. Their task is to apply law to the facts of cases; it is not one of arguing policy, making legislation, or asserting the beliefs of others on any case that could potentially come before them on an issue to make good on a promise that directly procured their appointment.
We again point to the comments Sen. Sanders uttered during the latest Democratic debate.

[SANDERS:] No nominee of mine, if I’m elected president, to the United States Supreme Court will get that nomination unless he or she is loud and clear, and says they will vote to overturn Citizens United.
The assertion in the statement above speaks to Sen. Sanders' misunderstanding of the purpose and power of the Office of the President of the United States and likely that of the Judicial Branch as well.

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