Former Justice White Backs Judges Facing Challenge

Former Tennessee Supreme Court Justice Penny White said she supports Chief Justice Gary Wade and Justices Cornelia Clark and Sharon Lee and believes they will be retained despite the political attack against them. In 1996, White became the only justice not to be retained by voters on a statewide ballot after facing an ouster campaign that portrayed her as soft on capital punishment — an argument being used today against Wade, Clark and Lee. White said she could not defend herself from the attacks due to judicial ethics rules at the time that kept her from speaking. "The whole playing field for judicial elections was different than it is today,"  White told the Daily Times. "They are now well within their rights to speak out."