Ohio Supreme Court Chief Justice candidate visits Greene County ahead of November elections
Ohio Supreme Court Justice Jennifer Brunner is visiting several Ohio Counties ahead of the November elections. Brunner plans to visit 68 counties as part of a statewide campaign tour.
This is the first year the candidates’ party affiliations will be listed on the ballot. The balance of the court will likely set the precedent for future decisions related to abortion, redistricting, and several other issues.
Both are racing to replace retiring Chief Justice Maureen O'Connor.
Brunner was elected Justice of the Ohio Supreme Court back in 2020. Before that she served as a judge in the Tenth District Court of Appeals, she also held state office as Secretary of State in 2006.
The chief justice is the superintendent of all the courts of the state, and under the rules of superintendents, the chief justice has the authority to tell a judge whether they can stay on a case or get off it, according to Brunner.
In her visit to the Greene County Democratic Party headquarters, Brunner said she plans to be an impartial chief justice for all Ohioans.
“If it's a civil matter, an auto accident or a criminal matter, the length of the sentence. You want a judge that's as fair and impartial as possible,” Brunner said. “And so the chief justice is there to ensure that that happens.”
Brunner’s platform includes establishing a Criminal Sentencing Database, an Ohio Task Force on Environmental Justice and supporting bail reform.
“I would like to think that I would carry on many of the administrative and initiative ideas, such as a statewide criminal sentencing database and a task force on conviction integrity.” Brunner said.
Meanwhile, in an email response, the Ohio Republican Party — which endorses Justice Kennedy — said Kennedy is a former police officer and supports Ohio Issue One — which requires a judge to consider public safety when setting bail for people facing criminal charges.
Alejandro Figueroa is a corps member with Report for America, a national service program that places journalists into local newsrooms.