Lawsuit filed over judicial seat

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Associated Press

Posted on January 30, 2014 at 7:02 PM

ASHLAND, Ky. (AP) — A senior judge in eastern Kentucky has filed suit over a state law that may prevent him from running for Boyd Circuit judge.

Marc I. Rosen says in the lawsuit that legislation passed last year by the General Assembly deprives him and a few other senior-status judges from running for office.

The law prescribes a five-year term for senior status judges and prohibits them from becoming candidates for office during that time period. Previously, the judges committed to working 600 days.

The Independent (http://bit.ly/1bCsB1L) reports that Rosen said he has completed his 600 days and his five-year term ends on January 31. However, the filing deadline for this year's primary election was January 28.

The newspaper reports Rosen's eligibility to run hinges on the outcome of the lawsuit.

The lawsuit says the legislation violates the Equal Protection Clause of the 14th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution "because it does not apply equally to all judges, let alone all senior-status judges." It seeks to have the law declared unconstitutional.

Democratic state Rep. Kevin Sinnette of Ashland said he proposed the law as a way to "clean up the language" in the statute governing senior judges and to prevent judges from double dipping, or drawing a paycheck and a retirement check at the same time.

"It was all done above board, and it was all about saving the state money," Sinnette said.

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Information from: The Independent, http://www.dailyindependent.com

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