Lame duck Gov. Beverly Perdue has issued a never-mind-what-I-said-before executive order in order to ensure she can replace retiring Democratic Supreme Court Justice Patricia Timmons-Goodson with another Democrat. Here’s part of the text of Gov. Perdue’s Never Mind Executive Order No. 137.
WHEREAS, based on information communicated to me by members of the Commission, it is apparent that time constraints will make it difficult, if not impossible (1) for the Commission to perform in a timely fashion its role of evaluating and nominating candidates to fill judicial vacancies that currently exist or that arise between now and the end of my term as Governor; and (2) for me to then properly perform my duty to fully consider the qualifications of the candidates nominated by the Commission to fill those vacancies; and
WHEREAS, a temporary modification of the judicial selection process established in Executive Order No. 86 will enable me to best perform my constitutional and statutory duty to fully and thoroughly consider the qualifications of candidates before filling judicial vacancies that currently exist or that arise between now and the end of my term as Governor, so that the most qualified candidate for each vacancy can be appointed.
NOW, THEREFORE, pursuant to the authority vested in me as Governor by the Constitution and laws of the State of North Carolina, IT IS ORDERED:
Section 1. With respect to all judicial vacancies that currently exist or that may arise between the present date and the end of my term as Governor, the process contained in Executive Order No. 86 shall be modified as set out herein. For such vacancies, I will exercise my constitutional and statutory authority to fill the vacancies without first receiving nominations from the Commission. However, I plan to consult with individual members of the Commission as I deem appropriate to seek their input regarding the qualifications of specific candidates for appointment.
And then, as her parting shot, Gov. Perdue’s Never Mind Executive Order No. 137 says this:
Section 2. I urge future Governors to continue utilizing the Commission to assist them in filling judicial vacancies for all of the reasons set forth in Executive Order No. 86.
In other words, do as I say, not as I do.
The original executive order, in which Perdue lays out the nominating process she is now bypassing, No. 86, can be found here.