Sometimes what you don’t say is as important , if not more, than what you do say. Specifically, I am referring to judicial evaluations. Virginia is one of the very few states where the legislators appoint candidates to the bench. Along with this, the legislators highly value the opinion of the local bar associations and other committees in making the various appointments.
If the evaluations provided by the bar associations and other groups do not list all of the facts about the candidate, a faulty appointment can be made. This does happen, consider the case of Judge Robert B. Beasley Jr. Once appointed, bad judges can do incredible damage. It is vitally important that the legislators know all of the information about a candidate prior to making a decision.
Consider Lorrie Sinclair , candidate for the 20th Circuit Court bench. In the evaluations provided by the Loudoun Bar Association and the Virginia Women’s Attorney Association there was no mention of her involvement in the re-trial of Bruce McLaughlin. There is also no mention of her lawsuit against her sorority .
Does Loudoun County want or deserve a Judge ,who as an attorney , attempted to keep an innocent man (Bruce McLaughlin) incarcerated. More disturbing about this, is that she heard the original interview tapes of McLaughlin’s children. The tapes were instrumental in gaining McLaughlin his freedom. Sinclair dismissed this and forged ahead anyway. She totally disregarded the lessons learned from DayCare Hysteria of the 80′s.
One is right to ask why all of the concerning issues with SInclair are not documented in her evaluations. The judicial selection process should be improved, it is critical that the legislators know all of the relevant facts.