More lawyers were willing to step up Monday to prevent Judge Shawn Womack, the anti-gay former Republican senator and foe of damage lawsuits, from running unopposed for an open seat on the Arkansas Supreme Court.
I’d reported earlier that Little Rock lawyer Clark Mason’s last-minute appearance to file for the open seat prompted Little Rock lawyer Brooke Ware to step back from her intention to file for the seat. Mason has a successful practice and more years of experience. I learned that two other trial lawyers were on hand and prepared to file to prevent an unchallenged race for the seat.
I’d heard Luther Sutter (famous recently for challenging Treasurer Dennis Milligan personnel action on behalf of a client) was on hand and prepared to file. I asked him. He said in a note this morning:
I was there and ready. So was Reggie Koch.
Both ceded to Mason, who sounds prepared to make a strong race, based on a brief conversation with him yesterday. He acknowledges the built-in difficulty of opposing someone able to reach the ballot with “judge” before his name.
But trial lawyers also understand the stakes in election of a chamber of commerce rubber-stamp to a Supreme Court seat, which would be the case with Womack, who carried their legislation as a senator.