Wolfson v. Concannon, et al., No. 11-17634 (9th Cir. 2014)Annotate this Case
Plaintiff, an unsuccessful candidate for judicial office in Mohave County, Arizona, filed suit challenging the facial and as-applied constitutionality of certain provisions of the Arizona Code of Judicial Conduct. The court held that Rule 4.1(A)(6) (the solicitation clause) is unconstitutional as applied to non-judge judicial candidates because it restricts speech that presents little to no risk of corruption or bias towards future litigants and is not narrowly tailored to serve those state interests. The court held that Rules 4.1(A)(2)-(5) - prohibiting speechifying, endorsements, and fundraising - are not sufficiently narrowly tailored to serve the state's interest in an impartial judiciary, and are therefore unconstitutional restrictions on political speech of non-judge candidates for judicial office. Accordingly, the court reversed the district court's grant of summary judgment in favor of defendants.
The court issued a Revised version of this opinion on September 26, 2014.