I have common sense solutions to make the courts better and more friendly. I am not part of the legal establishment and I am running to bring change.
I believe laws should be made by legislators, not judges. Judges should decide cases on the merits of the case. I believe that judges who create laws upend the legitimate role of our elected representatives. Restated, I know what my role is: Like an umpire, I will only call balls and strikes. And I will do so fairly and impartially.
When interpreting the Constitution, like the late Justice Scalia, I believe the courts should look to the original intent of the framers of the Constitution.
Justice Delayed is Justice Denied:
I am also running because I am concerned with the enormous backlog of cases in our court system. Unfortunately, many criminal cases in our Judicial District are delayed for years, including misdemeanors. I have also seen civil cases delayed unnecessarily. If I am elected, I pledge to work with the attorneys and the parties to timely resolve their cases. There are tools available to the court to ensure these case are tried.
These tools include scheduling orders and mediation referrals. Rule 31 of the Rules of the Tennessee Supreme Court provide trial judges with the authority to refer most civil cases to mediation. Tennessee's Rule 31 Listed Mediators are well trained and capable of helping many parties resolve their disputes. Mediation saves the public money and time. And the best part of mediation is: Mediation is voluntary in that the parties are always free to reject the mediator's solution and still proceed to trial, if they are unable to reach an agreement. If I am elected, I plan to use this tool whenever I believe it is appropriate and just to do so.
Make Courts User Friendly:
Attending court is rarely fun. However, the courts can be made more convenient and they can be made more user friendly.
I intend to modernize the courts by using current telecommunications technology. If your case is continued, you should be able to receive a timely update from the Court. How many times have you or a loved one had to miss work and spend all day in court, only to find out your case has been continued. Just as modern business has decided to use wireless technology, so will I as your judge. My office will use email and text messages to keep the attorneys and litigants updated on how their cases are progressing.