Digest: An incumbent judge seeking re-election may purchase tickets to and attend politically sponsored dinners or other affairs which take place outside the geographical boundary of the judge’s court.
Rules: 22 NYCRR 100.7 (a) (1), (2); Opinion 92-97, Vol. X.
An incumbent Town Justice seeking re-election inquires whether, under Rule 100.7 of the Rules of the Chief Administrator, attendance at political party functions is permitted outside the geographical area in which the judge is running for office.
Rule 100.7 (a) (2) of the Rules of the Chief Administrator has been interpreted by this Committee (Opinion 92-97, Vol. X), as permitting a judicial candidate, during the period specified in subdivision (1) thereof, to purchase not more than two tickets for, and attend, political party functions. The Rule does not limit the geographical area in which the party functions occur to the area in which the candidate will appear on the ballot, which seems practical, since political boundaries vary for different offices, and functions often occur outside the geographical area of a given political office.
Accordingly, the Committee would interpret Rule 100.7 (a) (2) in light of its intended purpose, which is to permit judicial candidates to meet the practical necessities of campaigning for a public office, which includes attendance at political party dinners or other affairs.