We were gratified to see The Times editorial (Oct. 29), "Sneak Attack," condemning a mailer distributed by the Lincoln Political Action Committee urging a no vote against five justices of the local Court of Appeal. As you point out, that mailer, labeled "Nonpartisan Candidate Evaluation Counsel," is neither "nonpartisan" nor a true "evaluation" of the performance of these jurists.
We are concerned about this unfortunate attack on the local Court of Appeal, not only for the reasons you recited, but also because we know these five justices to be among the very best on the appellate bench anywhere in the state. They all received high marks from the Judicial Evaluation and Nomination Committee and one was rated "exceptionally well-qualified." Their decisions on the Court of Appeal have been praised by professors and other leading legal authorities from California and elsewhere. As lawyers, we have read many of their opinions and find them of the highest caliber.
Through our work in the organized Bar, we are especially aware of the fine reputation each of these justices enjoys within the profession. All five are known to be hard-working, intelligent, knowledgeable about the law, and fair to all sides--prosecution and defense in criminal cases, plaintiffs and defendants in civil cases. They do not prejudge parties or issues and can be counted on to give a full hearing to every litigant who files an appeal in their court. It is difficult to give higher praise to any judge.