By Aimee Priya Ghosh | 61 Am. U. L. Rev. 125 (2011)
In the past twenty years, numerous elected judges (and judicial candidates) have argued that state regulations prohibiting them from personally soliciting campaign contributions—even from would be litigants—violate their First Amendment free speech rights and should be struck down. The constitutionality of these bans hedges on the level of scrutiny used for review. The bans should not be subject to strict scrutiny, but rather, the less rigorous campaign finance framework set out by the Supreme Court in Buckley v. Valeo.
If the Buckley framework is employed, the constitutionality of these bans will likely be upheld, and they will continue to serve as an important safeguard of the impartiality and independence of the American judicial system.