After considering the two remaining local races for judges in our courthouse here in Liberty County, I have become increasingly concerned about the outcome in November. President Obama is doing things on an ongoing basis that should remind us all of how important choosing judges and political leaders is.
Please consider what our Democratic President feels is a legitimate use of our justice system. One of my biggest concerns now that we have seen over a year of President Obama in action is not his rhetoric but his willingness to pervert justice in the courts to get what he wants. He is too political in using his influence on our courts. Two examples of how the courts have been used to promote Obama’s own prejudice and politics out of a growing list of such court manipulation. The Obama justice department has dropped the prosecution of black thugs caught on camera stationed outside a polling place intimidating voters and he has promoted to the Supreme Court a circuit judge who dismissed a discrimination lawsuit by white firefighters, whose case the Supreme Court later accepted and ruled in their favor. There is a growing list of better examples, but part of my point is to say we are not immune to similar abuse and prejudice influence by our own officeholders.
I was amazed when I first heard about Democratic County Judge Phil Fitzgerald openly using the courts to forgive his friend and business associate Glenn Vickery in a DUI case that was so well known by the public. It made me wonder what goes on in our courts when the cases are not involving someone so well known. But more amazing than that were the efforts we are already hearing by Democrats and allies of Zack Zbranek to make that whole business about Zack’s Republican opponent in the race for County Court at Law Judge. While the Republican candidate was an employee trying to do the best he could with a situation Democrats had created, Zbranek’s Democratic comrades were trying to use the courts for their own purposes.
There is a tremendous difference in the two accusations. While I believe Zbranek’s Republican opponent, Tommy Chambers, should possibly file a lawsuit on Fitzgerald, Zbranek supporters seem to dismiss the abuse of office and the abuse of Chambers as an employee and skip right to using the courts as a tool for political gain. Instead of hammering Chambers, a candidate for the court that was bypassed by Fitzgerald should have publicly denounced the County Judge’s behavior. But rather than criticize his fellow Democrat, Zbranek seems content to sit back and watch the whole affair to be perverted into some kind of hammer to beat his opponent with. It is outrageous. Like President Obama, it seems these politicians expect voters to listen to their “twisted tales” and to encourage public misperceptions. This attitude seems like the same kind that allows selective prosecution from the Liberty County District Attorney’s office, based on political and personal considerations in our courts.
Potentially making matters even worse for citizens of our county, Zack Zbranek is kinfolk to questionable incumbent, District Judge Rusty Hight, who is up for re-election this November. Two family members sitting on two of the three benches in our courthouse is not something most of us are comfortable with. As we have observed how the hero of their political party, Barack Obama continues to influence the courts to consider how they can make political gains by perverting the rule of law and due process and the obvious use of selective prosecution, I urge fellow citizens to listen to accounts of friends and neighbors of how these men have conducted certain key cases in our courtrooms which are indeed questionable. The potential for major problems by electing these two men is beyond dangerous.
Their behavior is far more dangerous than giving a break to one of their friends that was stopped for weaving on the road after taking prescription drugs. Having the power to rule on cases that effect the lives of not only our neighbors, but with the use of selective prosecution and the tendency to involve their politics, to rule on cases that could be drummed up on us or our children or our friends or anyone they perceive as a threat to their agenda is serious business. These kinds of things happen and we never know much about it until it happens to someone we care about.
Looking at just one example to show how far this Hight-Zbranek group has the potential to go to win just requires re-visiting the recent past. Please recall the media accounts of the case Hight got in ethical trouble for several years ago. It involved the custody of a child. Hight changed court documents to affect the outcome of that court case. Had he not been caught, it could have prejudiced a jury into a different ruling on the custody of a small child. But Hight was caught! The woman that would have been deprived of due process came forward during Hight’s first attempt to elevate himself to the position of District Judge and he lost that race. Perhaps the poor woman was shocked or maybe she was just tired of the public attention when Hight had the audacity to run again, but she did not campaign against him. He won in his second bid. As a result we have a District Judge that we should all be aware of has a past that indicates the lengths and the depths he will go to get his way. His disrespect for the law and due process and people’s rights is a matter of record.
How dare these people stand in judgment of the way Chambers handled Fitzgerald’s lack of integrity and disrespect for the law! How dare these political animals question anyone’s integrity, especially someone that though he was an employee, still had guts enough to set the Vickery case for re-filing! How dare them accuse Chambers of not being political enough to avoid the “deals” democrats send his way! We want to elect someone who is not as politically minded as these people.
These people are asking us to worry about people getting a break on misdemeanors while we ought to be more worried about innocent people getting railroaded by biased rulings or false or altered documents. Fitzgerald, the real initiator of the cause they have highlighted, was defeated at the polls. Now we must concern ourselves with the family that would ask us to trust our courts to them. They are tough campaigners and we can all prepare to be disgusted with their future political mudslinging, but we must not allow their politics to infect our justice system any more.