Don Willett

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Don Willett
TXwillett.jpg
Current Court Information:
Texas Supreme Court
Title:   Justice
Position:   Place 2
Salary:  $150,000
Service:
Appointed by:   Rick Perry
Active:   2005 - 2018
Past post:   Deputy Texas Attorney General
Past term:   2003 - 2005
Personal History
Born:   July 16, 1966
Party:   Republican
Undergraduate:   Baylor University, 1988
Law School:   Duke University, 1992
Candidate 2012:
Candidate for:  Supreme Court
State:  Texas
Election information 2012:
Incumbent:  Yes
Primary date:  May 29, 2012
Primary vote:  57.7%ApprovedA
Election date:  November 6, 2012
Election vote:  78.8%ApprovedA



Don R. Willett is a justice of the Texas Supreme Court, in Place 2. He was appointed to this position by Governor Rick Perry and took office on August 24, 2005. His current term will expire in 2018.[1]

Education

Willett received his BBA from Baylor University in 1988 and his A.M. and J.D. from Duke University in 1992.[2]

Career

After graduating from law school, Willett clerked for Judge Jerre Williams in the Fifth Circuit. In 1996, he joined former Governor George W. Bush's administration, as Director of Research & Special Projects. He also worked with the Bush-Cheney 2000 Presidential Campaign and Transition Team. From there, he was a Deputy Attorney General for the U.S. Department of Justice, but he left to join Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott's office in 2003, where he worked until his appointment to the Texas Supreme Court in 2005.[3]

Elections

2012

Willett defeated Libertarian Robert Stuart Koelsch in the general election on November 6, 2012 with 78.8% of the vote.[4]

Willett defeated Steve Smith in the Republican primary on May 29, winning 57.7% of the vote.[5][6][7]

See also: Texas judicial elections, 2012

Endorsements

  • Young Conservatives of Texas[8]

Campaign ads

In 2012 Don Willett spent $1,167,930 on primary TV ads.[9]


Don Willett's 2012 campaign ad

2006

Willett was elected to his seat on November 7, 2006. He narrowly defeated William Moody and Wade Wilson, winning 51.04% of the vote.[10].

Notable rulings

Willett's first majority opinion was Willis v. Donnelly, which was released on June 2, 2006. Willett wrote for a unanimous court in a case dealing with shareholder liability in close corporations.[11]

Conservative record

According to the endorsement of the Young Conservatives of Texas:

Justice Willett has earned consensus support from every corner of the conservative movement: pro-life, pro-faith, pro-family, pro-liberty, pro-gun rights, pro-law enforcement, pro-private property, and pro-limited government.[8]

Political ideology

See also: Political ideology of State Supreme Court Justices

In October 2012, political science professors Adam Bonica and Michael Woodruff of Stanford University attempted to determine the partisan ideology of State Supreme Court justices in their paper, State Supreme Court Ideology and 'New Style' Judicial Campaigns. A score above 0 indicated a more conservative leaning ideology while scores below 0 are more liberal. Willett received a Campaign finance score (CFscore) of 0.97, indicating a conservative ideological leaning. This is more conservative than the average CF score of 0.91 that justices received in Texas. The study is based on data from campaign contributions by judges themselves, the partisan leaning of contributors to the judges or, in the absence of elections, the ideology of the appointing body (governor or legislature). This study is not a definitive label of a justice, but an academic gauge of various factors.[12]

External links

References


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