The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 25, July 1921 - April, 1922 Page: 37
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The Texas Convention, of 1845
with the proviso that the treasurer and comptroller should be
elected biennially by the joint ballot of both houses.28
b. The Judicial Department
Since President Rusk considered the Judicial Department the
most important branch of the government, he appointed as mem-
bers of the Committee on the Judiciary, fifteen of "the most
learned judges and soundest lawyers of Texas."29 On July 11,
this committee made the following report concerning the judges
of the supreme court and of the district courts:
Sec. 5. the Governor shall nominate, and, by and with the
consent of two-thirds of the Senate, shall appoint the Judges of
the Supreme and District Courts.
Sec. 6. The Judges of the Supreme Court . .. shall hold
their offices for seven years.
Sec. 7. The Judges of the District Courts . . shall hold
their offices for six years.30
On July 26 the Convention resolved itself into a committee of
the whole for a consideration of this report. As there had been
much dissatisfaction with the recommendation that the governor
should appoint the judges, W. C. Young proposed that the judges
of the supreme court and of the district courts should be elected
by a joint vote of both houses. However, this amendment was re-
jected, and J. M. Lewis offered another amendment providing
that the judges should be chosen by the qualified voters.31 Just
before the convention had assembled, Mississippi had provided this
means of selecting her judges, and numerous articles had appeared
in Texas papers urging the convention to adopt this plan.32 Never-
theless, a majority of the convention deprecated its introduction
into the Texas constitution for these reasons: (1) that all citizens
were not capable of determining the fitness of judges, hence many
incompetent men might be chosen; (2) that the ablest and best
men would not "run for an office," but would often accept an
appointment; (3) that the judges might not render an impartial
" Journal of the Convention, 354.
29Texas National Register (Washington), July 17, 1845.
"Journal of the House, 47-48.
"Debates of the Convention, 261.
"Texas National Register (Washington), July 17, 1845.
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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 25, July 1921 - April, 1922, periodical, 1922; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101082/m1/43/: accessed May 27, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.