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Bar association finds Recktenwald qualified

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The Hawaii State Bar Association board of directors yesterday voted to find Associate Justice Mark Recktenwald qualified to be the next state chief justice.
The HSBA notified its members about the vote, but as part of its policy did not disclose the vote count, according to bar association president Hugh Jones.
The 20-member board met with Recktenwald yesterday afternoon and then voted on his appointment by Gov. Linda Lingle to replace Chief Justice Ronald Moon. Moon’s last day in office is Aug. 31.
The HSBA board earlier this month found Lingle’s first appointment of appeals judge Katherine Leonard to be “unqualified” for the chief justice position.
Following the board’s vote, the Senate rejected her appointment. Lingle later named Recktenwald to be the state’s fifth chief justice.
The Senate Judiciary Committee has a hearing scheduled for tomorrow on Recktenwald’s appointment. The full Senate is scheduled to vote on the appointment on Sept. 2.
Moon is leaving office because of the state law that requires judges and justices to leave the bench by age 70.  Moon turns 70 on Sept. 4.

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