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Opinion 78

A judge has asked for an Advisory Opinion as to whether it would be appropriate for him to co-sign a letter urging adoption of a mandatory assessment / treatment program for DUI drivers in Georgia.

Undoubtedly, there is much to commend the assessment / treatment program for drivers as an additional method of dealing with a very serious problem. At the same time, the Commission has consistently held, in Opinion No. 2 and in Opinion No. 77, that it is not appropriate for a judge to be personally associated with particular causes as an activist, no matter how worthy they may be. For that reason, the Commission is of the opinion that it would not be appropriate for the judge to co-sign the letter urging the adoption of a mandatory assessment / treatment program for DUI drivers in Georgia.

[Pertinent Code of Judicial Conduct provisions: Rules 1.2(B), 2.5(B), 2.10(A), 3.2, 3.7, 3.11, 3.11(B), 3.11(D), 3.13(C). Cross reference to other relevant opinions for review: #2, #77, #115, #138, #174, #178, #194.)

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