let Judicial elections worth coverage
Today I call upon all Minnesota media, and in particular the state's daily newspapers, to expand their coverage of judicial elections.
The media's role in providing citizens with important information about all candidates for elected office cannot be overstated -- it is integral. Without the diligent attention of the Fourth Estate, elections for any office in government can suffer a sort of democratic atrophy from lack of information and interest.
Minnesotans are among the most active and knowledgeable voters in the country. In making their decisions, they depend on thorough reviews and accurate reporting on each candidate's record and background and they often rely on endorsements by editorial boards.
Judicial races are important. Judges are called upon not only to resolve people's most troubling disputes, but to interpret pivotal questions of law and to guard constitutional rights. Their decisions touch our citizens' lives in thousands of ways each day.
In the wake of the United State Supreme Court's recent decision about appropriate judicial campaign speech, it is eminently clear that voters need to learn more about the individuals who seek a judgeship. The media has an essential role to play in gathering and disseminating this information.
In 2002 and beyond, I challenge you to provide Minnesotans with the coverage that will enable them to make informed decisions about judicial races.
A.M.; "Sandy" Keith