September 14, 2004
Digest: A judge’s court attorney need not resign upon declaring candidacy for the position of District Attorney.
Rules: 22 NYCRR 100.5(C)(2); Opinions 99-10 (Vol. XVII);98-19 (Vol.XVI)
A judge inquires whether one of the judge’s part-time court attorneys must resign his/her position upon declaring candidacy for the position of District Attorney.
The Rules Governing Judicial Conduct do not prohibit members of a judge’s staff who are the judge’s personal appointees from running for elective office. In previously addressing the question of such political activity the Committee noted that section 100.5(C)(2) of the Rules expressly contemplates the possibility of a personal appointee of a judge making contributions to his/her own campaign for elective office. It thus follows that the personal appointee may seek elective political office. Opinions 99-10(Vol. XVII); 98-19 (Vol. XVI). Nothing set forth therein requires resignation upon becoming a candidate for elective office. Accordingly, the judge’s court attorney need not resign his/her position upon declaring candidacy for the office of District Attorney.