Kentucky Attorney suing Governor Fletcher

By: Associated Press
By: Associated Press

A central Kentucky attorney is suing Gov. Ernie Fletcher, challenging the governor's controversial line-item veto that canceled nine judicial elections and turned the positions into appointed spots.

Georgetown lawyer Neil Duncliffe wants a judge to declare Fletcher's line-item veto unconstitutional and force elections of the nine seats, one of which Duncliffe wants to run for.

Duncliffe lost his initial bid to get on the ballot for one of the seats this week.

Kentucky Supreme Court Justice Donald Wintersheimer denied a request for an emergency injunction that would have put Duncliffe on the ballot uncontested for a family court seat in Scott, Woodford and Bourbon counties.

In April, Fletcher vetoed a provision calling for the election of the nine seats, effectively granting himself appointment power over the positions. Democrats have accused the Republican governor of court-packing.

A Fletcher spokesman has said the governor vetoed the election requirements so the bill would comply with the state constitution, which he said forbids holding a judicial election before it has been funded.

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