“The dignity and stability of government in all its branches, the morals of the people and every blessing of society depend so much upon an upright and skillful administration of justice, that the judicial power ought to be distinct from both the legislative and executive and independent upon both, that so it may be a check upon both, as both should be checks upon that.” - Thomas Jefferson


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Our Elected Courts:
Independent, Impartial, and Respected

Since 1858, competitive judicial elections have strengthened our state’s courts, preserved their independence, and made them into the envy of much of the nation and the world.

In an age when divisive politics and the looming menace of civil war threatened to undermine our civic institutions, Minnesota’s founders wisely recognized that the only sure way they could create a respected judiciary independent and impartial enough to defend the rights and liberties of the people from special-interests and the encroachment of the executive and legislative branches of government, was by letting the people, and not the politicians, select for themselves who would be their judges.

Minnesotans today can be proud that national studies consistently rate our courts amongst the finest in the nation. We can be proud that when emerging democracies abroad have need for judicial advice, they’ve turned to Minnesota judges. And proud that while other states have allowed their courts to be auctioned off to the highest bidder or turned into mere marionettes of the governor, the independence, integrity, and impartiality of our courts has remained beyond question because of the brilliant design of our state’s founders.

Unfortunately, too few Minnesotans know this.  Minnesota Citizens for an Independent Judiciary is seeking to change that. Our goal is to help end the mystery surrounding our state’s judiciary, and to bring about a greater public appreciation for the brilliant design of our system.