Texas: Local Court Runoff Tests Judicial Campaign Fairness Act

A district court candidate involved in a Republican runoff has taken the rare step of rejecting the voluntary campaign spending limits enacted by the Judicial Campaign Fairness Act of 1995. The built-in incentive to follow the limits is that, once one candidate refuses to comply, the other candidates in the race are no longer bound. Since the law was enacted, only 32 candidates have ignored the voluntary limits, although one of the law’s architects has seen an uptick in noncompliance in recent elections.

One of our newest publications, Cornerstones of State Judicial Selection, recommends that states adopt voluntary candidate spending limits for judicial elections.