By John Sharp
Missouri voters will decide on Nov. 8 whether to retain two Missouri Supreme Court judges, and voters in Cass, Clay, Jackson and Platte Counties and the other 41 counties covered by the Kansas City based Missouri Court of Appeals Western District will decide whether to retain four of its judges.
The Supreme Court judges up for retention are Zel Fischer appointed by former Governor Matt Blunt in 2008 and Robin Ransom, the first Black woman on the court, who was appointed by Governor Mike Parson last year.
The Court of Appeals judges up for retention are W. Doug Thompson, a Parson appointee; Alok Ahuja, a Blunt appointee; and Mark Pfeiffer and Karen King Mitchell, both appointees of former Governor Jay Nixon.
Under the Missouri Nonpartisan Court Plan, appellate judges are appointed by the governor from a list of finalists chosen by an independent commission. Appointees come up for retention at the next general election after serving for a full year and every 12 years thereafter.
Several circuit and associate circuit judges also are on the ballot for retention this year in Clay, Jackson and Platte Counties. Circuit judges serve six year terms, and associate circuit judges serve four year terms.
Except for these three counties, Greene County, St. Louis County and St. Louis City, judges in all other Missouri counties run for election in traditional partisan elections.