A group of northwest Iowans picketed the courthouse in Spencer today to protest the secrecy surrounding selection of a new judge. A judicial nominating commission interviewed nine applicants for a job that’ll open when a district court judge from Algona retires. Paul Dorr of “Rescue the Perishing” says the meeting should be open to the public. Dorr made a direct appeal to commission members to open the meeting. Dorr says the public should be able to see the process, and find out who’s a candidate for the bench. Dorr says this kind of “behind closed doors, dark room justice” is not right. Dorr, who is from Ocheyedan, says judicial nominating commissions in other areas of the state conduct open meetings. The nominating commission will submit two names to the Governor, and he’ll pick one of ’em for the district court judgeship which hears cases from 10 northwest Iowa counties (Lyon, Osceola, Emmet, Kossuth, O’brien, Clay, Palo Alto, Cherokee, Buena Vista).
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