"Being a Supreme Court Justice really is on the short list for dream jobs for a lawyer," Supreme Court Justice Maura Corrigan said Thursday.
Conservative Supreme Court Justice Maura Corrigan is out -- Thursday she accepted Governor Snyder's offer as Director of the Michigan Department of Human Services.
"It's a critical point in this state's history," she said.
She will officially leave the bench on January 14th, Snyder promises to have a replacement ready in advance, though he wouldn't say who he might appoint.
"We will continue along the lines of what we have been doing on executive side, as we will on the judicial side," Snyder said, "of finding the best people for the job."
Of course Snyder's pick will be a Republican, keeping the line drawn in the sand in our state's highest court at a 4-3 Republican majority.
"What change will occur? I suspect very little," Ronald Bretz, a professor at Cooley Law School, said. "A republican justice is leaving, and someone new will be appointed by a republican governor."
Cooley law professor Ronald Bretz said republicans have been in control for quite some time now, minus a brief stint by the democrats last year. The first part of this century was dominated by the rule of four Engler appointees.
"In that time, they over ruled thousands of years of precedent and changed a lot of law in Michigan," Bretz said.
He doesn't expect the new court in 2011, with the new Snyder appointee, to be in his words as 'radical,' but they will certainly still be conservative in decision making.
"The new justice will follow, rather than leading in the beginning," Bretz said. "That's usually how things go."
Because Snyder doesn't have any legal experience, Bretz thinks Corrigan will assist him in choosing the next Supreme Court Justice.
Whoever Governor Snyder appoints to the supreme court will not need confirmation by the legislature.