The Judiciary Committee in the Iowa House will be issuing subpoenas, seeking notes and other information from the commission that interviewed candidates and nominated two people for a district court judge vacancy.
Governor Reynolds threw out the nominations after some commission members complained the judge chairing the panel coached one candidate and lied about another withdrawing. House Judiciary Committee chairman Steven Holt said legislators have been unable to get notes or email related to the commission’s October 12 meeting from the judicial branch and the subpoenas will require a response within 14 days.
“We want to try to get the information that’s available so we can get a bigger picture of what actually took place,” Holt said.
The House committee is also asking the judicial branch if a complaint has been filed against Judge Kurt Stoebe of Humboldt. He’s the judge accused of manipulating the process for nominating a replacement for a district court judge from Carroll who was appointed to the Iowa Court of Appeals last year. Key Democrats argue lawmakers should wait for a report from the Judicial Qualifications Commission, which they say is likely investigating Stroebe.
The commission’s investigations are confidential, unless a final report calls for sanctions against a judge.