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Q&A: Prop 13

Proposition 13

“The constitutional amendment to increase the mandatory age of retirement for state justices and judges”

If voters approve this proposition, the mandatory retirement age for state justices and judges would increase from 75 to 79. It also increases their minimum retirement age from 70 to 75.



The Waco Tribune-Herald reported on 19th State District Court Judge Ralph Strother, now 80, who was forced to leave office because of the mandatory retirement for state justices of 75 years old. The only reason Strother was able to serve past 75 was because he ran for office before he was 75 and a provision allowed him to stay in office until the fourth year of the six-year term when he was 77 years old. Strother told the Waco Tribune-Herald that at 80, he can still compete with younger judges and the public would benefit from experienced judges holding office a little longer.

– This information was compiled by Xochilt Garcia. 



Andrew McVeigh 

Executive Director 

Texans for Fiscal Responsibility

Q: Why does your organization oppose this proposition and why should Texans care about it?

A: We understand there might be a benefit from more experience on the bench. We understand that. And of course people are living longer, but our main concern is the possibility for cognitive decline in older people and the potential for miscarrying justice in a courtroom. 

So when you’re talking about someone who’s been charged with a crime, they’re facing years in prison or even the death penalty, when you’re talking about someone’s life, the potential for miscarrying justice because someone perhaps is older and just maybe isn’t all there…we just think the risk of that happening as someone gets older outweighs the benefit of having someone more experienced by a couple of years on the bench. That’s why we oppose this. We think Texans should vote no on this.

– This Q&A was edited for clarity and length. Interview conducted by Miriam Perez. 

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