Lost Coast Outpost | Humboldt County

Superior Court CEO refutes Steward Endorsers Claim

From Ben McLaughlin/May 27, 2022, 8:18 a.m.




for media only: Ben McLaughlin +1 (707) 382-2351; ben4judge2022@gmail.com





Humboldt Superior Court Executive Officer Corrects Inaccurate Steward Endorser’s Claim




Judge Canning found factually incorrect in his attack on Candidate Ben McLaughlin



May 27, 2022, Eureka, Calif.— Kim Bartleson, Humboldt County Superior Court Executive Officer swiftly reacted to a public letter sent to blogger John Chiv yesterday




The letter was issued by sitting Judge Thomas Canning.  The Humboldt County Court wasted no time determining that Canning was seriously in error in his claim that Ben McLaughlin violated court ethics with his candidacy for Judge when his significant other was also a Judge.  In consultation with the appropriate State authorities, Bartleson researched the claims and assumptions in Canning’s letter and found them to be factually incorrect.



“The Court has researched the issues and finds nothing under California law, nor the California Code of Judicial Ethics, that causes any ethical concerns for significant others serving on the bench at the same time. In addition, during the course of researching this issue, the Court learned there are other Courts within the state wherein a spouse of judicial officers in a close familial relationship have been serving on the same bench. Further, after discussion with both the Judicial Council and the California Judges Association Ethics Committee, they agree with the Court’s conclusions…


There is nothing in the law that would ethically prohibit Mr. McLaughlin from being a judge.”



Ben McLaughlin responded, “I thank the Court and Presiding Judge for affirming what I told Judge Canning via email—that my candidacy is neither ethically fraught nor unique within the state.  In my opinion, which the Court now publically supports, my relationship with Judge Neel is a non-issue.  Voters should only be concerned with electing the most qualified candidate.”



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