UPDATE: Governor names ex-adviser to Kansas Supreme Court

By: Associated Press
By: Associated Press
Governor Sam Brownback says Caleb Stegall is "one of the most qualified people" to ever be named to the Kansas Supreme Court.

Caleb Stegall

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TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — Governor Sam Brownback says Caleb Stegall is "one of the most qualified people" to ever be named to the Kansas Supreme Court.

Brownback named his former aide to the high court on Friday and called him "brilliant."

He put the 42-year-old on the Court of Appeals last year after he spent three years as the governor's chief counsel.

Stegall was one of 13 people who applied for the seat Justice Nancy Moritz gave up to take a seat on the 10th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals. The appointment does not require state Senate confirmation.

An online magazine Stegall edited in 2005 encouraged "forcible resistance" to state and federal court orders to save the life of a brain-damaged Florida woman, though he later said it only advocated civil disobedience.

In a 2008 online newspaper chat, he called the U.S. Supreme Court's 1973 ruling legalizing abortion "weak."



Previous Story

Gov. Sam Brownback has made State Court of Appeals judge Caleb Stegall his first appointment to the Kansas Supreme Court.

Brownback made the announcement Friday morning during a news conference at the Statehouse.

The other finalists were state Court of Appeals judge Karen Arnold-Burger and state District Judge Merlin Wheeler. Stegall will replace former Justice Nancy Moritz, who left to join the 10th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals.

Stegall was Brownback's chief counsel before he joined the appeals court in January. Arnold-Burger has served on that court since 2011.

Wheeler is chief judge of the 5th Judicial District of Lyon and Chase counties.

Brownback's appointee to the Supreme Court will not require state Senate confirmation.


Previous story:

Gov. Sam Brownback is preparing to announce his first appointment to the Kansas Supreme Court, and the finalists include a former aide he named previously to a lower court.

Brownback was having a Friday morning news conference at the Statehouse to announce the appointment.

The finalists are state Court of Appeals judges Caleb Stegall and Karen Arnold-Burger and state District Judge Merlin Wheeler. The new justice will replace former Justice Nancy Moritz, who left to join the 10th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals.

Stegall was Brownback's chief counsel before he joined the appeals court in January. Arnold-Burger has served on that court since 2011.

Wheeler is chief judge of the 5th Judicial District of Lyon and Chase counties.

Brownback's appointee to the Supreme Court will not require state Senate confirmation.


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