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A judicial retention election can, and should be, used to voice dissatisfaction with the inadequate direction the system is heading.

There is very little accountability directed to those convicted of felonies. I believe a judge is accountable for more than showing up to work, being courteous, reasonably competent and upholding the constitution. They have an obligation to the citizens within their district.

Their decisions have a direct impact on the behavior of existing criminals and on potential criminals. They also have an impact on the actions of the police force, on lawyer plea bargains, on citizen safety and respectfulness for the government in general.

If our local community-based sentencing options are inadequate and/or underfunded then it is the responsibility of our elected officials to correct it. It makes no sense to continue dumping more criminals back into our society. This only creates an erosion of respect in that system and an increasing attitude of disobedience by those who are on probation.

The majority of citizens agree or we wouldn’t have authorized the funding for the new jail.

Our district judges are not doing the best they can by allowing felons to be repeatedly released back into our streets. The penalty of a felony crime allows for prison time. Enforce the penalty.

If another prisoner is released due to state prison conditions as a result, so be it. That prisoner will probably be in another community since very few from this community are sent to prison.

The system we now have is not helping the law abiding citizens of our district. There is a better way if we make it a priority. Accepting what we have now is ridiculous. Election time is fast approaching and included on the reverse of this ballot is an area to vote for or against retaining several judges. I strongly recommend the citizens vote to not retain them. Their record of deferred judgments, suspended fines, suspended sentences, parole extensions for felons who have violated existing parole requirements, and minimal accountability for habitual lawbreakers is atrocious. A change is needed.

Arnold Meyermann, Clinton