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Five former governors and two former state chief justices say Governor John Carney is right when appealing a decision that struck down the requirement for political balance for Delaware’s judges.

The Wilmington News Journal reports that the former officials have filed legal briefs with the U.S. Supreme Court.

The former officials include former Democratic governors Jack Markell, Ruth Anne Minner and Senator Tom Carper as well as former Republican Governors Dale Wolf and Mike Castle.

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DOVER, Del. (AP) - Gov. John Carney has lost his latest challenge to a federal judge's ruling invalidating a state mandate for political balance on Delaware's courts.

A three-judge appeals panel upheld that ruling in February, saying that limiting membership on Delaware's Chancery, Superior and Supreme courts to Democrats and Republicans was unconstitutional.

Leo Strine,

Delaware Chief Justice Leo Strine is looking at working with private companies to help with the construction and maintenance of new facilities in Kent and Sussex Counties.

WBOC reports that court officials say the current facilities in Dover and Georgetown are too small and do not provide the proper safety requirements.

They were built in 1988.

The plan would be similar a long-term lease but the state would own the two buildings.

Republican State Senator Brian Pettyjohn represents the Georgetown area.

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PHILADELPHIA (AP) - A federal appeals panel has upheld a ruling that a provision in Delaware's constitution requiring a political balance among state court judges is unconstitutional.

A three-judge panel of the 3rd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled Tuesday in favor of James Adams, a lawyer who sued Democratic Gov. John Carney over a constitutional provision that requires the governor to split judicial nominations between the two major political parties. Adams says he wanted to apply for judgeships, but he didn't meet the political affiliation requirements.

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DOVER, Del. (AP) - A federal appeals court is set to hear arguments in a lawsuit over a state mandate for political balance on Delaware's courts.

Federal appellate judges in Philadelphia were to hear arguments Tuesday in an appeal filed by Democratic Gov. John Carney, who's challenging a ruling by a federal judge in Wilmington. The judge declared that the political balance provision violates the First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution by restricting government employment based on political affiliation.

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RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - A controversial bill that sought to exempt administrative records of the judiciary from Virginia's public records law has been withdrawn by its sponsor.

The Richmond Times-Dispatch reports that Sen. Richard Stuart, R-Stafford, moved to strike his bill from the Senate floor Wednesday.

The bill said the Supreme Court's Office of the Executive Secretary would be exempt from the Freedom of Information Act.

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DOVER, Del. (AP) - A Delaware lawyer says the state's constitution is unconstitutional in requiring a political balance among judges on Delaware's courts.

James Adams sued Gov. John Carney on Tuesday over the provision, which mandates that judicial nominations and judgeships be split between the two major political parties.

Adams says selecting judges partially on political affiliation, and excluding members of minority parties, is unconstitutional. He claims that violates the freedom of political association guaranteed by the U.S. Constitution.

DOVER, Del. (AP) - Gov. Jack Markell has nominated Judge Jan Jurden to become the first female head of Delaware's Superior Court system.

In a statement Monday, Markell praised Jurden's "skill, dedication, and integrity." If confirmed by the Senate, she would succeed James Vaughn as president judge of Superior Court. Vaughn recently became a state Supreme Court justice.

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ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - The Maryland court system is launching an electronic case management system to eventually enable people statewide to file and view court documents on their computers.

Tuesday's launch in Annapolis makes electronic filing mandatory for attorneys practicing in Anne Arundel County and the state appellate courts.

The Maryland Judiciary plans to roll out the system, county by county, over the next five years.

The project aims to modernize case management in Maryland counties, some of which are using systems that are 30 years old.