Judge says Judicial Qualifications Commission Director Ordered Him Off Case Involving Influential Attorneys
Earlier this year, the director of the state’s judicial watchdog agency called a judge about his oversight of a business dispute and influenced him to withdraw from the case.
That involvement by the Judicial Qualifications Commission in a south Georgia lawsuit now is raising the kinds of concerns critics voiced when the Legislature overhauled the agency, an investigation by The Atlanta Journal-Constitution has found.
No formal complaints had apparently been filed against the judge with the JQC, nor was there a motion for him to recuse.
However, some high-profile politicians were attorneys in the case: Ken Hodges, at the time incoming president of the State Bar of Georgia and a candidate for the state Court of Appeals, and state Sen. John F. Kennedy, the Republican caucus majority leader and a member of the Senate Judiciary Committee.
The head of Georgia's judicial oversight body urged a tough judge to drop a case involving influential lawyers and politicians without any formal complaint or motion to recuse. The Atlanta Journal-Constitution’s Johnny Edwards dives into this complex story.