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State of New Mexico

Judicial Selection in the States: New Mexico

Overview

News

Plans to change the way North Carolina s Supreme Court justices are elected appear to be closing in on an elect/appoint then retention race system....

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South Carolina is one of two states (Virginia is the other) where the legislature elects judges. Under existing law (2-19-70(A)) currently serving members of the...

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A followup to this point from earlier. Local news reports from this morning now indicate that the Senate rejected 4-1 with 27 abstentions the House...

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Courtesy of the Bureau of Justice Statistics, U.S. Department of...

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The New Mexico judiciary consists of a supreme court, a court of appeals, a district court, and various trial courts of limited jurisdiction. New Mexico judges were originally chosen in partisan elections, but in 1988, voters approved a constitutional amendment creating a hybrid system of judicial selection that includes merit selection, partisan elections, and retention elections. When a judicial vacancy occurs, the appropriate nominating commission recommends qualified candidates to the governor, and the governor makes an appointment. At the next general election, a contested partisan election is held to fill the seat for the remainder of the term. The successful candidate runs in retention elections thereafter. The threshold for retention is higher in New Mexico than in most other states; judges must receive at least 57% in affirmative votes to be retained.