In Alaska, Supreme Court appointments are governed by the Nonpartisan Court Plan - which means the Governor is given a list of candidates to choose from by the Alaska Judicial Council. She does not have free reign to choose whomever she wants. In this case, she was given 2 names - Morgan Christen and Eric Smith. That's it! She had to choose the "lesser of two evils." I've done a quick google search on Eric Smith and he's affiliated with left-leaning environmental groups - that would be the worst choice for Alaska, a state where environmental policy is always top priority.
To calm the storm, Palin posted a note on her facebook page and a link to an article that describes the flaws in the selection process. Her hands were tied with this pick but she made the right choice out of the two candidates.
"Gov. Palin is totally pro-life. Always has been. Always will be. She believes in a culture of life from cradle to grave. Her choice for Supreme Court judge was made in accordance with Alaska law. She chose the person most qualified from the names sent to her. The Governor's choice has a record of fairness. That is important as the courts sort out some very thorny issues. Governor Palin's choices were either a liberal or an independent. She went with the independent. And as the following article reflects - this selection process is flawed. " -Sarah Palin's Notes, 3/6/09
Process of selecting Alaska's judges is clearly flawed
By Bob Flint
Catholic Anchor Online
Alaska courts have a long history of removing contentious social and cultural issues from the democratic process. Court rulings have forced private hospitals to perform abortions, ordered gay marriage and benefits, required taxpayer funded abortions and interfered with parents' rights to be involved in the abortion decisions of their minor child.