September 18, 1990
Digest: A full-time judge running for re-election may not serve as a member of a Chairman's Club of a county political organization which raises funds to support candidates in local elections, but the judge's spouse may join the club.
Rules: 22 NYCRR §§100.7.
A full-time judge, running for re-election, inquires whether the judge and the judge's spouse may serve as members of a Chairman's Club of a county political organization. Contributions made to the Club are used to support candidates in local elections.
Section 100.7 of the Rules of the Chief Administrator states that “[n]o judge during a term of office shall hold any office in a political party or organization or contribute to any political campaign except his or her own campaign for elective judicial office.” Although judges who are announced candidates for elective judicial office may engage in some political activity, the Rules do not appear to permit the activities inquired about.
Accordingly, the judge may not serve as a member of the Chairman's Club of the county political organization. However, the judge's spouse may serve on the Club and may contribute funds to other political candidates. This Committee does not construe any questions in connection with the Election Law.