Grand Divisions

Tennessee Equality Project seeks to advance and protect the civil rights of our State’s gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender persons and their families in each Grand Division.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Lt. Gov. appoints former legislator who tried to ban adoption by gays to judicial commission

Lt. Governor Ron Ramsey announced the appointment of former State Representative Chris Clem to the Judicial Performance Evaluation Commission

As a legislator, Clem was quite the culture warrior, even trying to ban adoption by gays and lesbians.  And this was back in the day when they explicitly tried to pass an adoption ban.  There was no beating around the bush with language like "no unmarried individuals" in those days. 

According to Tom Humphrey's piece linked above:

"The Judicial Performance Evaluation Commission reviews the performance of appellate judges using surveys, interviews and other information, as required by law. The Commission uses these evaluations to publish a report in which the Commission recommends appellate judges for retention or replacement. Of the nine members of the Commission, two are appointed by the Speaker of the Senate, two are appointed by the Speaker of the House and five are appointed by the Judicial Council.
Among the qualities the commission looks for in the judges are integrity, knowledge and understanding of the law, an ability to communicate, preparation and attentiveness, service to the profession, effectiveness in working with other judges and court personnel."

Let's hope the former representative's views have evolved or at least don't overly color his evaluation of judges.  Given the week we've had of county Republican parties complaining about gay state employees, this is not a good sign. 

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