Quantcast
Connect with us

Judge calls opponent ‘selfish’ for wanting to ‘break barriers’ as first elected female chief justice of Texas Supreme Court

Published

on

Jerry Zimmerer, an appellate judge in Houston, said his campaign differs from Amy Clark Meachum’s because “I actually want the best candidate to win.”

Jerry Zimmerer, a Houston appeals court justice running for Texas Supreme Court, said his Democratic primary opponent, Amy Clark Meachum, has “selfish” motivations for running, pointing to the fact that she has cast her campaign to be the first woman elected chief justice of the Texas Supreme Court as a historic one.

ADVERTISEMENT

“I just think somebody who wants to try to break barriers for their own benefit is not going to be successful,” Zimmerer told The Texas Tribune in an interview Thursday. “I just don’t think that’s what voters are looking for. … I just think that’s a goal she wants to achieve for herself.”

He said his campaign is different because “I actually want the best candidate to win.”

“I may not be the first anything, but I’m going to be the best,” he said.

Meachum said Zimmerer “should run on his own record instead of attacking mine.” Throughout her campaign, Meachum has said she hopes to restore balance to the all-Republican court and champion women in the legal profession.

“If he chooses to disparage a more qualified and experienced judge because of her gender, he’ll find himself on the wrong side of history,” she said. “These sorts of sexist comments are straight from the 1950s.”

ADVERTISEMENT

Meachum, who was elected to the trial bench in Travis County in 2011, serves as civil presiding judge for all civil and family courts in the county. Previously, she was an equity partner at McGinnis Lochridge in Austin.

Zimmerer was elected to a Houston appeals court in November 2018 amid a Democratic rout of urban appellate courts. Before that, he worked as a trial lawyer and information technology specialist.

In the interview, he said his 14 months as an appellate justice better prepare him for the high court than Meachum’s time on the trial bench.

ADVERTISEMENT

“She wants to go from being a lowly trial judge all the way up to the top of the pyramid,” he said. “She hasn’t even worked her way up through the appellate level. … Can she point to an opinion where she actually changed the law?”

In a state bar poll that gauges Texas attorneys’ support for judicial candidates, Meachum won more favor than Zimmerer, with 1,779 votes to his 326. The Republican incumbent, Chief Justice Nathan Hecht, won 2,706 votes.

ADVERTISEMENT

Meachum has said she is the Democrats’ best chance at winning a seat on the high court for the first time in more than two decades.

“I don’t exactly look like or sound like my primary opponent, my general election opponent, or any of the men who have previously been elected Chief Justice,” she said in a Houston Chronicle questionnaire. “I am making an important statement for women in the law and women in our party in 2020 and I would appreciate your support!”

Reached Friday for comment, Zimmerer said, “As someone who has traveled the state trying to pull together all the different groups that make up the Texas Democratic Party into a cohesive coalition, I have concerns with those who would seek to divide us.”

ADVERTISEMENT

Three women and six men sit on the Texas Supreme Court. Sharon Keller serves as presiding judge of its sister body, the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals, on which four men and five women sit. Fifty-one percent of the state’s intermediate appellate justices are men, as are 63% of district court judges, according to the most recent state statistics, from September 2019.

Women have led the Supreme Court only once. In 1925, for a single special setting of the Texas Supreme Court, then-Gov. Pat M. Neff appointed three women to hear one case. The lawsuit involved the land rights of Woodmen of the World, a prominent fraternal organization that counted among its members all three male justices on the court at the time, as well as the prominent male attorneys Neff considered as interim appointees. It was six decades before a woman was appointed to sit on the court full time.


Report typos and corrections to: [email protected].
READ COMMENTS - JOIN THE DISCUSSION
Continue Reading

2020 Election

Republicans scrambling for a new 2020 election game plan in wake of Trump’s COVID-19 debacle: Ex-Ted Cruz aide

Published

on

Republicans who had hoped to see Donald Trump re-elected and their hold on the Senate maintained in the November election because of a strong economy are scrambling to come up with a new strategy now that millions are out of work due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Writing for the conservative Bulwark, former Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) aide Amanda Carpenter, explained that the GOP leadership has their work cut out for them in the wake of the COVID-19 health crisis that may leave hundreds of thousands dead and millions out of work.

Continue Reading

2020 Election

Even some diehard Bernie Sanders supporters are open to voting for Biden if it will get Trump out of office: report

Published

on

When Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez — easily Sen. Bernie Sanders’ most prominent ally in the Millennial generation — recently told comedian Seth Meyers that she would support former Vice President Joe Biden if he received the 2020 Democratic presidential nomination, it was obvious that even some of Sanders’ most hardcore allies would much rather have Biden in the White House than see President Donald Trump reelected. The “Bernie or bust” ideologues still exist, but journalist Sam Stein — in an article published by the Daily Beast on April 10 — finds that they are by no means representative of Sanders’ supporters on the whole.

Continue Reading
 

2020 Election

Trump’s coronavirus response has been criminally irresponsible — but here’s why he could still win in 2020

Published

on

The March boost in Donald Trump's approval ratings, already modest compared with those of other U.S. presidents in times of crisis, has now faded.

This article originally appeared on The Globalist.

Joe Biden, certain to be the Democratic Party's candidate in the November election, is leading Trump both nationally and in most of the critical "battleground" states that the Democrats need to win.

Continue Reading
 
 
You need honest news coverage. Help us deliver it. Join Raw Story Investigates for $1. Go ad-free.
close-image