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Governor wants more applicants for judgeship

January 17, 1997

From staff reports

With only two names still in the hat for the vacant Washington County Circuit Court judgeship, Maryland Gov. Parris Glendening is seeking more applicants.

A notice that ran in The Daily Record on Jan. 14 gave qualified attorneys until Jan. 29 to get their applications into the Administrative Office of the Courts in Annapolis.

The move was prompted by the withdrawal of Hagerstown attorney Gregory C. Bannon, who in December wrote a letter accusing Glendening of making judicial appointments based on political considerations.

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Bannon complained that Glendening decided to interview just one of the three candidates, Hagerstown attorney William Kennedy Boone III, because he already had interviewed the other two candidates - Bannon and Washington County State's Attorney M. Kenneth Long Jr. - for a previous judicial appointment 15 months ago.

"That vacancy was for the District and not the Circuit Court," Bannon told Glendening in a letter dated Dec. 16. "More importantly, after the first two-and-a-half minutes of my interview in October, 1995, your secretary, obviously on cue, came in to remind you that your next appointment was there. After that, I was rushed out the door."

Bannon estimated that his interview lasted less than 15 minutes.

Glendening spokesman Tori Leonard said in December that it is standard practice for the governor, who keeps his notes from interviews, not to re-interview candidates if they are being considered for an appointment similar to the one for which they interviewed earlier.

Long, also under consideration to replace Washington County Circuit Judge Daniel W. Moylan, who retired Sept. 15, said he, too, thought it was appropriate to re-interview because it's a different position. He said he didn't plan to pull out of the running.

The names of any new applicants will go to the Judicial Nominating Commission in Washington County for consideration.

The 13-member commission will meet in February and will forward to the governor the names of any new applicant who receives a majority of the votes cast by members of the commission.

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