In the race for North Carolina Court of Appeals between Judge Rick Elmore and Steven Walker, being “conservative” is not enough. Both candidates are conservative. Both are registered Republicans. Both are fathers, active church members, and members of the NRA. Both candidates believe judges should interpret the law, not make law. So, what’s the key difference between Judge Elmore and Mr. Walker?
First, Judge Elmore is the only candidate who has judicial experience. He has served on the NC Court of Appeals since he was elected in 2002. In that election, he received more votes than any other Court of Appeals candidate. Judge Elmore has authored more than 700 judicial opinions. His opponent has never even been a judge.
Second, Judge Elmore is the only candidate who has ever represented a client in a court of law. Yes, you read that right. Judge Elmore’s opponent has never practiced law. He has been a law clerk for a few years. Contrast that to Judge Elmore’s experience. Before being elected to the Court in 2002, Judge Elmore practiced law at the state and federal levels for 20 years. Judge Elmore was counsel of record in countless jury trials. On the other hand, Judge Elmore’s opponent has never conducted a trial, argued a motion to a judge, picked a jury, performed an opening or closing argument, or even represented a client.
Judge Elmore is a member of the American Bar Association, the North Carolina Bar Association, the North Carolina Sheriffs’ Association, the North Carolina Sentencing Commission, and the North Carolina Bar Association’s Appellate Rules Committee. His opponent is not a member of any of these organizations.
Judge Elmore has been endorsed by North Carolina’s only elected Republican Chief Justice of the Supreme Court, I. Beverly Lake, Jr. (ret.). He is also endorsed by the only Republican to win four statewide judicial races in North Carolina, Associate Justice Robert Orr (ret.). So, the message is clear: (1) Judge Elmore needs your financial contribution to win this race; and (2) tell everyone you know in NC to vote for Judge Rick Elmore for NC Court of Appeals on Nov. 2. Because the Court of Appeals is not an entry-level job, and being “conservative” is not enough.