Vote NO on Question 1
Why should we spend taxpayer dollars to rename our courts because a few people can't do a Google search?
One of the questions on the ball this year is Question 1. This Amendment would change the name of the Maryland Court of Appeals to the Supreme Court of Maryland. The Court of Special Appeals will also be renamed the Appellate Court of Maryland.
With all of the problems that Maryland faced during the General Assembly session, from crime to the economy to education, the fact that Democratic General Assembly leadership decided to make the renaming of our Courts a priority says a lot about their judgment.
So the real question here is; why would we be interested in changing the name of the courts? The short answer is that the people of Maryland do not understand how our government works.
Admittedly, our appellate court system is oddly named. The Court of Appeals is the highest court in Maryland. The Court of Special Appeals sounds like it should be the highest court in Maryland, but it is the court that is directly below the Court of Appeals. So I acknowledge that the naming convention may be confusing.
People often however call the Court of Appeals the “Maryland Supreme Court.” This may be due to an overfocus on national issues and the assumption that the highest court in all states is called the Supreme Court. Or it could be because so many Marylanders move here from outside the state. This tripped up Ben Jealous during his 2018 gubernatorial campaign when he referred to the Court of Appeals as “our state Supreme Court”. It serves as somewhat of a shibboleth for those who move here and want to immediately embed themselves in state politics.
A thirty-second Google Search could have saved them the embarrassment.
The Court of Appeals has been named as such in 1776. It has worked for us thus far, and the cost and the hassle of changing it will not provide any value to the State.
Voters should vote NO on Question 1.