Senate Impeachment Trial Up Next for All 4 West Virginia Supreme Court Justices
By Bill Chappell, Dave Mistich, Camila Domonoske and Barbara Campbell
West Virginia's House of Delegates voted to impeach all four justices on the state's Supreme Court of Appeals on Monday, saying they will face an impeachment trial in the Senate over the use of state funds to renovate Supreme Court offices.
The four are Chief Justice Margaret Workman and Justices Allen Loughry, Robin Davis, and Elizabeth Walker.
Workman and Davis are accused of paying retired senior status judges more than the law allowed.
After two hours of debate, an article of impeachment against Loughry was approved in a matter of seconds, by a final vote of 64-33. The tally easily exceeded the 51 votes needed to go forward with trial proceedings.
The vote to send an article of impeachment against the second justice, Davis, passed by a slightly narrower margin, 56-41.
Any justices who are impeached in the House are then tried in the Senate, with lawmakers from the upper chamber serving as jurors and deciding whether to remove the justices from office.
The votes came one week after the state House Judiciary Committee approved 14 articles of impeachment against the four justices who currently sit on the Supreme Court of Appeals, accusing the judges of "maladministration, corruption, incompetency, neglect of duty." They came under fire last year, when it was reported that they had spent more than $3 million to renovate their offices.