Fox News reports:
Most non-federal judges around the country are selected by voters in elections. But some states use a process called “merit selection” in which a committee — often made up of lawyers —appoints judges to the bench instead.
Soros has spent several million dollars in the past decade in an attempt to get more states to scrap elections and adopt the merit method. Supporters say it would allow judges to focus on interpreting the law rather than on raising campaign funds and winning elections.
Lynn Marks, executive director of Pennsylvanians for Modern Courts — a group funded by Soros’ Open Society Institute — defended the latest Soros endeavor: “Merit selection would end the money race and get judges out of the fundraising business."
Despite the seemingly innocuous intent purported by Marks, critics see a more dangerous motive: Committees, often comprised of lawyers, would give left-wing judges the upper hand.
“The left can’t get their agenda through the legislatures anymore … so they think they can get their agenda through by taking over the courts,” explained Colleen Pero, author of a new report entitled “Hijacking Justice." Her highly incriminating report found that Soros has given $45 million over the last decade through the Open Society Institute to “a campaign to reshape the judiciary.” However, according to the group Justice at Stake, the recipient of the largest amount of money, that figure is grossly miscalculated.
"it’s [a] horrendously bogus distortion of numbers," indicates Justice at Stake spokesman Charlie Hall. He explains that the $45-million figure included groups related to legal issues but had no position in the process of merit selection. Hall states that he could identify only $2 million from Soros that went to groups which have supported the process of “merit selection.”
An investigation by Fox News reveals otherwise:
In an analysis of the Open Society Institute's tax returns from the last ten years, FoxNews.com found more than $5 million was explicitly earmarked for projects about either "merit selection" or "judicial selection."
In 2007, the Open Society Institute gave $90,000 to Pennsylvanians for Modern Courts “to expand and grow a coalition in support of merit selection. An additional $50,000 went to Justice at Stake in 2006 in support of ‘public education regarding merit selection.” And $7 million-plus was allocated for Justice at Stake, as well as partner organizations with specific directions in order to support Justice at Stake activities.
Marks has said of Soros’ generous donations, “We are very grateful for [his] support of our efforts.” She indicates that her group has received more than $500,000 over the last decade, but adds that the group has not received funds from OSI since 2008.
Defending the merit selection process, Marks said, “Elections discourage competent lawyers from becoming judges just because they aren’t good politicians. They don’t put their name in for nominations because they think they don’t have the political connections or access to dollars.” According to Marks, “Judges should resolve disputes based on evidence — they’re not supposed to be responsive to public pressure.”
In response to Marks’ assertions, Pero highlighted a study by prominent law professors which revealed that elected judges were more independent than judges appointed by committee, and that those elected judges tended to take on a larger workload.
“We began this project with the assumption that the data would demonstrate that appointed judges are better than elected judges,” Pero remarked. “it may be that elected judges are, indeed, superior to appointed judges.”
Furthermore, Pero contends that the process of merit selection is “inherently undemocratic.”
“It would be a handful of lawyers who elect judges. … [W]ith elections, the people actually have a say.”
Perhaps that is the point. In the book The Shadow Party, written by David Horowitz and Richard Poe, the authors outline a step by step system utilized by Soros in order to bring about regime collapse — a hobby of Soros’. That process involves the following:
- Create a shadow government — Soros’ various funding sources [have] provided money to groups like the Institute for Policy Studies, Center for American Progress, and the Apollo Alliance — all of which have proven to be influential in legislative affairs.
- Control the airwaves — Soros’ organizations have funded organizations like National Public Radio, Media Matters, and Free Press — which leads the movement to end "hate speech," i.e. conservative speech, on talk radio. It also funds the Huffington Post.
- Destabilize the state — Soros has made a number of “charitable” donations to notorious rabblerousers like La Raza and MoveOn.org. Soros has also made friends with a number of notable global agitators. He has launched a campaign against capitalism, infiltrat[ing] academia to promote anti-capitalist sentiment among students (see Story of Stuff).
- Provoke an election crisis — Soros allegedly used Senator John McCain to push the McCain-Feingold Act, which restricts the ability of grassroots groups to advertise on television, while allowing major media free rein to promote their Democratic candidates. Soros’ Open Society Institute has also funded ACORN, notorious for its voter fraud scandals, as well as the Secretary of State project, since the Secretary of State is the one who certifies election results. (Many claim that it is Soros’ SOS agents that enabled Al Franken to win the election in Minnesota in 2009).
- Take Power/Stage Demonstrations —Soros’ organizations have donated to aggressive vigilante groups like the Ruckus Society, ACORN and Faith and Public Life.
Given Soros’ record for fundamentally transforming political systems within a nation, and in light of the fact that he has openly admitted that he views the United States as an obstacle to his esteemed “new world order,” Pero may not be far from the truth.
Still, Marks dismisses the claim as ridiculous. She asserts, “Merit selection requires a change in the Constitution, so a bill must … go before the public. So when people say, ‘oh, you’re changing the way we vote’ — yes but only if the people want to change the way we vote.”