In a rare national TV interview, retired Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O’Connor voiced concern that the recent Citizens United decision of the Supreme Court could lead to greatly increased political spending by corporations, special interests and unions.
“I hope that it won’t. It could. It has that potential,” she told newsman Wolf Blitzer of CNN in an interview, after he asked whether the decision could “open the floodgates” for such political spending.
“Of course I’m worried about it because so much money has been going into judicial campaign races in recent years” in states where judges are elected by voters, O’Connor added. When he asked her to elaborate about the potential impact, O’Connor replied, “It has the effect of turning judges into these politically elected figures, in arms races, if you will, by people with the means to support them.”
“What the framers of our Constitution tried to achieve, when they wrote that Constitution back in the 1700s, was an independent federal judiciary,” O’Connor emphasized.
You can learn more about O’Connor’s role in advocating for an end to judicial elections from Gavel Grab.