This past week, we continued the series covering the Supreme Court races in North Carolina in the articles NC Supreme Court Races: Associate Justice Race and NC Supreme Court Races: Associate Justice Race PT 2. Here is the full series to date:
- The NC Supreme Court Races
- NC Supreme Court Races: Chief Justice Race
- NC Supreme Court Races: Chief Justice Race Part 2
- NC Supreme Court Races: Chief Justice Race Updates
- NC Supreme Court Races: Associate Justice Race
- NC Supreme Court Races: Associate Justice Race PT 2
This Supreme Court Associate Justice race involves three candidates. The sitting Justice, Robin Hudson and two challengers. There will be a primary to narrow the field down to just two candidates. The race is non-partisan in nature, however Hudson, the incumbent, is a Democrat. Her challengers are Republican. In the first installment of the Associate Justice Race, we looked at challenger Jeanette Doran. The second article looked at Eric Levinson. Today we round out this race with a look at Robin Hudson.
About Robin Hudson
Born in Georgia, Hudson attended Page High School in Greensboro before attending Yale University. Hudson returned to North Carolina to pursue a law degree at UNC Chapel Hill.
Associate Justices in North Carolina are elected and serve eight year terms. Justice Hudson was elected in 2006, began her term in January 2007 ; that term expires this year. When Husdon ran, it was against Ann Marie Calabria. Hudson barely squeaked out the win with 50.6% of the vote to 49.4%. It was a close count despite the efforts of ‘non-partisan’ groups. Some people might remember the now defunct 527 group “FairJudges.net” and their push for Hudson at the time. FairJudges.net was accused of coordinating with the Democrat party to run ads unlawfully on the Supreme Court Race. Their website, viewable at Internet Archive, claims the groups is bipartisan, yet they ran ads mainly for Democrat candidates.
The NC Board of Elections took no action against FairJudges.net, saying it ‘wasn’t clear’ they coordinated with the Democrat party, even though much of their operating funds came from Democrats. Ann Marie Calabria filed suit. The case was later dismissed; see page 550 of the NC Court of Appeals reports, volume 198.
Of interest in the FairJudges.net donor list, Public Policy Polling with $2,900 and Bob Etheridge for Congress with $5,000 and the NC Democrat Party with $75,000. The Democrat party was the largest donor by far, with NC Trial Lawyers (53K) and the SEIU (25K) as runners-up. Of interest in the expenditures, was Scott Falmlen. That name should ring a bell.
Falmlen is the former Executive Director of the NC Democrat party, ran a campaign for former Governor Easley and subsequently testified during the Easley campaign finance trial and was also involved with former Governor Bev Perdue. In more recent memory, Falmlen was linked to the NC Future Action Fund. Another non-profit that sent out mailers that stated “You can beat the Tea Party from your couch” on them and was pushing absentee voting during the Wake County School Board elections in 2011. LinkedIn now lists him as a partner at Nexis Strategies.
Rewinding a bit in Hudson’s biography, in 200o, she ran for Court of Appeals before running for Supreme Court in 2006. Hudson has the distinction of being the first woman elected to the appellate division without having first been appointed. Prior to joining the bench, Hudson was an attorney in private practice after being admitted to the NC Bar in 1976.
A little bit more on her pre-bench career is on her Supreme Court biography page:
Except for 3 years as assistant appellant defender in the mid-1980’s, she practiced law in the private sector and handled a variety of trials and appeals, but concentrated on workers’ compensation and tort litigation, with particular emphasis on occupational diseases and products liability. She practiced extensively before the Industrial Commission, as well as in State and Federal courts. Since 1994, she has been certified to mediate cases from Superior Court and the Industrial Commission.
Endorsements of note, Hudson has picked up one from a Left leaning social justice/environment/education outfit “Durham’s People Alliance“. Hudson’s campaign site also has a letter to voters and video statement. More details and endorsements located on her Judgepedia Page, which oddly enough, quotes this blog:
This is the only supreme court race in North Carolina that will include a primary election. With two Republican candidates in the primary, voter turnout from that party is expected to be high. Local politics blog Lady Liberty 1885 pointed out that this could even cause Hudson to lose her seat, since only two candidates may advance from the primary. If Republican voters turn out in force to support either Doran or Levinson, it would counteract Hudson’s incumbent advantage.
Points of Contact:
- Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/JusticeHudson
- Website: http://www.robinhudson.org/
There will be one more installment in this series which will focus on the Beasley/Robinson race.