California High Court Amends Rules Regarding Judicial Elections

In the wake of the November elections, the California Supreme Court adopted amendments to the code of judicial ethics that address judicial campaigns. The new rules require appellate judges, who stand for retention every twelve years, to recuse themselves from hearing cases involving parties who have made campaign contributions of at least $5000. The new rules also mandate that judicial candidates, including incumbents, complete a judicial campaign ethics course before the election and that they review and approve all materials produced by their campaign committees.