Opinion 131

The Judicial Qualifications Commission has been asked for an Advisory Opinion as to whether the mere designation, Democrat or Republican, of a candidate for the office of Probate Court Judge, most of whom are prevented by law from offering for election as nonpartisan candidates, is inappropriate.

This question is answered in the negative – it is not an inappropriate political activity. In Opinion No. 90, this Commission concluded that, even in a nonpartisan election it was not inappropriate for candidates to state their political party affiliation and offices they had held in partisan organizations and the same is true in a partisan election.

The candidates may also attend partisan political functions and seek the support / endorsement of these organizations, but the candidates may not, in either a partisan or a non-partisan election, represent that they are qualified, or better qualified, because of their political party affiliations.

[Pertinent Code of Judicial Conduct provisions: Rules 1.2(B), 4.1(A), 4.1(B), 4.2(A), 4.2(B). Cross reference to other relevant opinions for review: #1, #23, #36, #58, #83, #90, #108, #124, #165, #167.]

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