RUMPOLE ENDORSES JUDGE LARRY SCHWARTZ OVER GINA MENDEZ
Candidate Gina Mendez emailed us in response to our request for candidates to email us anything they want us to consider:
I am sole practitioner with extensive trial experience on both sides of the courtroom. As a former prosecutor, I have over 75 jury trials in Circuit Court. Currently, I specialize in criminal defense and family litigation. As a defense attorney, I have had 13 jury trials and numerous bench, family trials, all in Circuit Court. I have chosen to practice law in two areas that provide me with daily, in-court experience. I have been an advocate for the victims of crime and I have been an advocate for the accused, always seeking to protect the rights afforded to each. I have been an advocate for husbands, wives, and children in family disputes, always seeking to protect the rights afforded to each. Because of these experiences, I know that there are two sides to every story. As a sole practitioner, I know the hardships of running an office and being in trial. I know firsthand the need for a judge who understands that. I know what it is to spend a morning watching a judge who cannot effectively run a calendar. I won’t be that type of judge. I will apply the law fairly, respectfully, and courteously, with the goal being the administration of justice. I will be prepared, knowledgeable about the issues, and fair. The lawyers and litigants who come before me will know that they were heard and respected. I have a strong work ethic and will be a judge you can respect.
Ms. Mendez’s short statement is clear, concise, and puts her in the category of experienced attorneys who will do a good job if they win.
Early on we decried that Judge Schwartz had opposition. We intimated that it appeared to us that Jewish males were being targeted by Hispanic females. But in response to our post, there were dozens of comments about Judge Schwartz’s courtroom demeanor. We wrote at the time something to the effect that Judge Schwartz was a former prosecutor with the values of a Greenpeace activist. What we meant by that is when you know Judge Schwartz, you learn that he practices in his personal life the values he preaches.
Does Judge Schwartz have a demeanor problem? Well, the answer lies in the question. Since so many lawyers who have appeared before him have raised the issue, the answer is undeniably yes.
Is that sufficient for him to be replaced?
From our point of view, what Judge Schwartz does when he rules on the bench is explain in blunt and no holds barred detail why he is ruling the way he is.
Maybe he would just be better off saying “denied” with a fake smile and moving on. (He can travel North of the Border and sit in any courtroom and see what we mean.) But because we believe he cares about what he does, he takes the time to explain why he is doing what he is doing. And many times the "why" is not very pretty. But we believe Judge Schwartz has the experience and ability to stay in his job.
RUMPOLE ENDORSES JUDGE LARRY SCHWARTZ FOR REELECTION.
RUMPOLE ENDORSES JUDGE MURPHY FOR REELECTION.
Attorney Josie Perez Velis challenges Judge Dennis Murphy. Why?
Once again, the sad answer is because she can win.
Judge Murphy has made quite an impression in six years. We practitioners of criminal law are a close knit group. We talk and compare notes incessantly on Judges. In six years we have personally not heard one person say one negative thing about Judge Murphy.
Both the prosecutors in his division AND the public defenders got together to jointly host a fundraiser. What does that tell you?
Judge Murphy hit the ground running as a Judge and has never looked back. What he lacked in the beginning in intricate knowledge of the criminal justice system he more than made up for with his knowledge and understanding of the practice of law.
When you appear before Judge Murphy, you get the feeling that he understands where you are, because he has been there. Maybe not necessarily defending a criminal client, but as a lawyer, handling a case. When you try a case before him, he stays out of your way. You do your job, stay within the rules, and you do not have to look over your shoulder worrying that the Judge will interfere.
Judge Murphy is fair, hard working, has a good sense of humor on the bench, and is widely respected. There just is no good reason for Ms. Velis to have challenged him.
How good could Ms. Velis feel about herself if she wins?
Will she really think the bench will be better off with the loss of Judge Murphy?
Does she truly believe the community will be better served by the loss of Judge Murphy?
Ms. Velis should have thought about those questions before running.
We have overheard people close to Ms. Velis say that this is not about Judge Murphy, but about her desire to be a Judge. Those people are wrong. Ms. Velis was wrong to run in this race.
RUMPOLE ENDORSES JUDGE MURPHY FOR REELECTION.