CHARLESTON, W.Va. — Third District Congressman Evan Jenkins said Monday he’s interested in both seeking the appointment and election to the state Supreme Court with the recent resignation of Justice Menis Ketchum.
The three-week filing period for the open seat began Monday along with an announcement from the office of Gov. Jim Justice that the Judicial Vacancy Advisory Commission started to receive applications Monday and would do so through Aug. 14. Interviews are scheduled for Aug. 23-24.
“I’ve expressed openness an interest in being considered possibly for the appointment because I think we need new public representation on the Court to begin the healing process,” Jenkins said Monday on MetroNews “Talkline.”
Jenkins’ second term in Congress comes to an end at the end of the year. He was defeated in the May Primary Election in his attempt to gain the GOP nomination for a U.S. Senate run.
Gov. Justice will likely appoint a replacement for Ketchum to serve during the Supreme Court’s fall term. The person elected in November won’t take office until January. That winner will serve a two-year unexpired term. Justice seemed to support a Jenkins run in a tweet last week.
Kanawha County Joanna Tabit was one of the first to file for the November election Monday. She said now more than ever the Supreme Court needs a “proven, qualified, experienced judge.”
“I believe that I’m that person and I look forward to traveling across the state and meeting people and hopefully earning their trust and their vote,” Tabit said.
Tabit was appointed a fill-in chief justice on the Supreme Court earlier this summer and voted to suspend Justice Allen Loughry after the state Judicial Investigation Commission released a 32-count statement of charges against him for allegedly violating the Judicial Code of Ethics.
Putnam County attorney Carl Hostler also filed for the Supreme Court race Monday.
The filing period ends Aug. 21.
Ketchum left the Court last month after serving for 10 years. He was named in a federal criminal information last week by the U.S. Attorney’s Office. He’s scheduled to plead guilty to a wire fraud charge in the near future.