Sunday, March 22, 2009

Which one of your children do you like the most?

That's what I think when I'm asked -- as I often am -- who I'll vote for in the upcoming circuit court election.
I say that because I've known -- and worked both with and against -- Fred Zievers and Chad Kerkman for years. Both are fine people with significant roots in the community.
Both Fred and Chad tout their experience as prosecutors but that's somewhat of a distortion. Chad's stint was brief and Fred's ended nearly three decades ago. Both of them have spent much more time defending criminals than prosecuting them.
I'm not one to hold service as a prosecutor as a litmus test on whether someone is a better candidate for judge. It's not uncommon for prosecutors to tilt the other way when they become judges and the same applies for defense attorneys who should have a keener insight as to when a criminal is trying to pull the wool over their eyes.
Experience is also a fleeting thing. Some folks say Chad's too young. Other say Fred's too old. What all of this says to be is that this is but another good example of why Wisconsin needs to reform the judicial selection process so that we get the best and the brightest.
I am still undecided and the way both candidates have been avoiding substantive discussion of the real issues means I'll likely throw a dart to see which one gets my vote.
There has to be a better way.

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