Rule 4.2 - Political And Campaign Activities Of Judicial Candidates In Public Elections

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(A) A judicial candidate in a public election shall:
(1) act at all times in a manner consistent with the independence, integrity, and impartiality of the judiciary;
(2) comply with all applicable election, election campaign, and election campaign fund-raising laws and regulations of this jurisdiction;
(3) review and approve the content of all campaign statements and materials produced by the candidate or his or her campaign committee, as authorized by Rule 4.4, before their dissemination; and
(4) take reasonable measures to ensure that other persons do not undertake on behalf of the candidate activities, other than those described in Rule 4.4, that the candidate is prohibited from doing by Rule 4.1.

(B) A judicial candidate in a public election may, unless prohibited by law, and not earlier than 365 days before the first applicable election:

(1) establish a campaign committee pursuant to the provisions of Rule 4.4;
(2) speak on behalf of his or her candidacy through any medium, including but not limited to advertisements, websites, or other campaign literature;
(4) attend or purchase tickets for dinners or other events sponsored by a political organization;
(5) seek, accept, or use endorsements from any person or organization other than a partisan political organization; and


Comment Text: 

[1] Paragraph (B) permits judicial candidates in public elections to engage in some political and campaign activities otherwise prohibited by Rule 4.1. Candidates may not engage in these activities earlier than 365 days before the first applicable election. See definition of “judicial candidate,” which provides that a person becomes a candidate for judicial office as soon as he or she makes a public announcement of candidacy, declares or files as a candidate with the election authority, or authorizes or engages in solicitation or acceptance of contributions or support. This rule does not prohibit private conversations with potential supporters by a potential candidate as part of an effort to “test the waters” for a future candidacy. It does prohibit establishing a campaign committee earlier than 365 days before the election date.

[2] Despite paragraph (B), judicial candidates for public election remain subject to many of the provisions of Rule 4.1. For example, a candidate continues to be prohibited from soliciting funds for a political organization, knowingly making false or misleading statements during a campaign, or making certain promises, pledges, or commitments related to future adjudicative duties. See Rule 4.1(A), paragraphs (4), (11), and (13).


[4] In nonpartisan elections, paragraph (B)(5) prohibits a candidate from seeking, accepting, or using nominations or endorsements from a partisan political organization.

[5] Subject to the 365 day limitation, judicial candidates are permitted to attend or purchase tickets for dinners and other events sponsored by political organizations. (Cf. Rule 4.1, Comment 6A, Judges are permitted to attend or purchase tickets for dinners or other events sponsored by a political organization.)



Associated Court Rules: 
Arkansas Code of Judicial Conduct
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