Press Release from The Tennessee Forum, July 14, 2014:
The Tennessee Forum derided the endorsement of Tennessee’s liberal Supreme Court by 11 Democrat district attorneys as yet another example of partisanship by Judges Connie Clark, Susan Lee and Gary Wade.
“These endorsements are merely the latest in a series of blatant partisan maneuvers by the judges. Out of all the sitting district attorneys in Tennessee, they could find only 12 to support them — 11 of them partisan Democrats,” said Susan Kaestner of the Tennessee Forum. “This partisanship by the Supreme Court is becoming a pattern.”
“At the first sign of mounting opposition to their retention, the judges called in Barack Obama’s political machine for help. Then they paid the Tennessee Democrat Party thousands of dollars for ‘voter contact.’ Now, in a desperate attempt to distract voters from their record on crime, the judges have asked their Democrat prosecutor friends to use their positions of public trust to distort their records,” Kaestner continued. “At this point, any and every attempt by the Supreme Court to assert that they are “non-partisan” should be laughed out of the room. Today’s announcement was a stunt — pure and simple.”
“The real story here is the judges could only find 11 of 31 district attorneys to endorse their retention. It makes you wonder why the other two thirds declined to join their effort,” Kaestner said.
Despite their proclamations of nonpartisanship in paid media and public appearances, the three incumbent Tennessee Supreme Court justices all have records as Democratic partisans. Judges Connie Clark, Sharon Lee and Gary Wade were all appointed by a Democrat governor and have a long history of generously contributing to Democratic campaigns.
The coordinated campaign supporting the retention of the judges has hired at least three Democrat political operatives to help them get reelected. Campaign disclosures filed last week revealed payments from each judge to the Tennessee Democrat Party for voter contact.
Founded in 2000, The Tennessee Forum is an independent issues-driven nonprofit organization. Managed by Susan Kaestner and Dawn Eades, the group has opposed politicians on both sides of the aisle. Kaestner and Eades are not tied to special interests groups, take no remuneration for their political work, and operate strictly from the perspectives of concerned citizens of Tennessee. For more information, visit www.tnforum.org.