Elections

Robyn Brody wins race, becoming Idaho’s 3rd female Supreme Court Justice

Robyn Brody
Robyn Brody

Robyn Brody won about 54 percent of the vote for a seat on the Idaho Supreme Court.

Brody led Curt McKenzie by about 40,000 votes on Wednesday morning, after all precincts in the state had reported. Brody had 297,989 votes, while McKenzie had 257,374, according to the Idaho Secretary of State’s Office.

The candidates competed to succeed Jim Jones on the Idaho Supreme Court.

Reached at home in the early hours Wednesday, Brody said she was grateful to “all the terrific folks in Idaho who have helped me along the way. This has been such an amazing journey, and the best part of this process so far has been traveling Idaho, meeting people.”

She said supporters have gone “out of their way to help,” from a plumber who helped her at a coffee shop while she was sewing a button onto a jacket, to someone putting together a demolition derby car at the Eastern Idaho State Fair in support of her campaign.

Brody and McKenzie were the top vote-getters of four candidates in May’s primary, when the high court seat usually would be decided. But no single candidate took more than 50 percent of the vote in that election, so Brody and McKenzie went on to compete in the first Supreme Court runoff since 1998.

McKenzie, of Nampa, is an attorney and seven-term Republican state lawmaker who is leaving the Legislature.

Brody has been an attorney for about 20 years. She currently practices in Rupert and has practiced in Twin Falls.

WHERE DOES BRODY STAND?

Brody said earlier this year that she could bring “a perspective of being connected to the people, being connected to the decisions that are being made.” She wrote in the Idaho Statesman’s voter guide that she believed she could “bridge the gap” between rural and urban issues.

Both candidates said they supported transparency in Idaho’s court system, as long as technological changes do not violate privacy in juvenile cases, for example. The Supreme Court is shifting to a digital record system and considering how to enable online viewing of court documents.

WHO SUPPORTED BRODY?

The race for Supreme Court is nonpartisan. However, the candidates took in plenty of contributions and endorsements, including from people and organizations that could end up going before the Supreme Court.

Brody received at least 260 contributions totaling $188,083, based on records compiled as recently as late October by the National Institute on Money in State Politics. Most of her largest contributions came from attorneys and law firms throughout the state, according to the institute.

The Idaho Statesman’s editorial board — which is separate from its newsroom — endorsed Brody in September.

Members of the Idaho State Bar twice this year rated Brody as the top candidate for integrity, temperament and professional abilities.

Audrey Dutton: 208-377-6448, @IDS_Audrey

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