December 28, 2015 § 1 Comment
Reshaping of the MSSC is continuing with the appointment of Judge Jimmy Maxwell of the COA to the high court seat being vacated by Justice David Chandler. The appointment to the North Mississippi District seat, is effective January 1, 2016. Maxwell will have to run in a judicial election in November, 2016.
Chandler’s resignation earlier this month, to assume leadership of the state’s troubled foster-care program, created the vacancy to which Maxwell is appointed. Only the timing is surprising. It was widely known that Justice Chandler did not intend to run again when his term ended in 2016. Multiple sources said that Maxwell intended to run for Chandler’s seat if he did not run again.
One soon-to-be-vacant MSSC seat remains to be filled. Justice Randy Pierce is stepping aside to take over leadership of the Mississippi Judicial College, effective February 1, 2016.
Maxwell’s appointment will in turn mean a vacancy on the COA that will have to be filled from District One, which is the northeastern area of the state.
The Jackson Clarion-Ledger’s article on Judge Maxwell’s appointment is at this link. (You might encounter a paywall and annoyances like pop-ups and “surveys”)
All of the 2015 judicial appointees, at both appellate and trial levels, will have to stand for election in 2016. This latest round of appointments, along with previous appointments and other appellate races that are expected to be contested, will make for an interesting judicial election cycle in 2016.