2022 recap: Ohio Chief Justice Maureen O’Connor resigns after making history

The tenth Chief Justice of Ohio, Maureen O’Connor, is retiring, but not before history. She is the longest serving woman elected from the state in Ohio history. And she’s the first woman to head a state judiciary.

“I don’t think, ‘Well, I’m the first female presiding judge’ until I realize the impact it has on other people. And that’s part of the responsibility I feel in this job to demonstrate that a woman can do this job not only well, but very well,” O’Connor said.

She said she was proud that other female judges were inspired by her as she went from local judge and local attorney to lieutenant governor and finally her role on the court. In this capacity, she changed the judiciary, including reforming the bail system and creating opioid courts.

“I sympathize with outsiders and that is one of the things that drives me as a public servant… being a public servant for everyone and what the system can and should do for everyone is very important to me. I don’t like injustice,” O’Connor explained.

This sense of justice and commitment to the constitution was the driving force behind a decision that could go down in history as the most controversial. O’Connor, a Republican, sided five times with three Democratic judges to overturn redistricting maps drawn up by Republican legislative leaders. O’Connor said these cards, which favored GOP candidates, were unconstitutional. This angered some of her fellow Republicans.

“Now I understand that they took my photo in some headquarters, including the state headquarters, and in others they turned it to the wall. I injured? I’m worry? No. I have to say it’s a small thing and it reflects more on them than of course on me,” O’Connor said.

In the end, the Republicans were able to get a different ruling from a federal court with new judicial appointees from former GOP President Trump. That court ruled that the state could use a third card that the Ohio Supreme Court declared unconstitutional for the 2022 election.

O’Connor said she was concerned about federal court involvement in the state’s case, calling the way it was handled “pretty ridiculous.”

“It’s like a fight between two kids, you have an 8 year old and a 6 year old and you’re like, ‘You better handle this or the 8 year old wins.’ Wow! That’s exactly what it was, so there was no reason for them to come up with something better than a third map, damn it,” O’Connor said.

The Ohio Supreme Court has a rule that prohibits judges from running for office after they reach the age of 70. On August 7, 2022, O’Connor turned 71 years old.

O’Connor said she is the first Chief Justice to actually resign from the court without losing an election or dying in office.

Having worked all her life in responsible jobs, she says she will see what it’s like to be “sweet to do nothing.”

“I just look forward to sitting down and reading for fun and also fly fishing which I love to do and travel. … I have six grandchildren, I missed a lot of sporting events, games, things they did because of my schedule. So that will change,” O’Connor said.

In addition, O’Connor said she plans to help in some way. She did not elaborate on exactly how, but during her last speech before the court, she said she plans to play some role in pushing for another constitutional amendment to fight fraud.

Content Source

News Press Ohio – Latest News:
Columbus Local News || Cleveland Local News || Ohio State News || National News || Money and Economy News || Entertainment News || Tech News || Environment News

Related Articles

Back to top button