Wednesday, September 22, 2021 8:33 pm

Bales ponders retiring; could open way for Ducey’s 5th justice pick

Chief Justice Scott Bales in his chamber./Photo by Dillon Rosenblatt/Arizona Capitol Times

 

By Dillon Rosenblatt | Arizona Capitol Times

Arizona Supreme Court Chief Justice Scott Bales has not hired any clerks for the year, which coupled with the looming end as the court’s leader could spell retirement.

A Bales retirement would also give Gov. Doug Ducey his fifth appointment on the seven-member court.

In a recent interview with the Arizona Capitol Times, Bales said he hasn’t committed to retirement when his five-year term as chief justice ends June 30, but ASU law professor Paul Bender said the justice’s decision not to hire clerks suggests Bales is seriously considering retirement.

“If the choice was 50-50, he would have hired clerks,” Bender said. Not hiring any would mean he’s likely not returning, Bender said.

Bales said clerks typically are hired a year before they would start.

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