Friday, October 05, 2007

The wisdom of Solomon

Word came down just after 1 p.m yesterday that we can expect Chancellor Daryl Fansler's ruling on how the Knox County Commission's violation of the Sunshine Law is to be remedied.

Some are already complaining that the ruling will be today instead of yesterday, because may were hoping for a resolution in a hurry, but everyone needs to give Chancellor Daryl Fansler a break. I am quite certain that I am not the only person who believes that Fansler is going to have to decide this case with the wisdom of Solomon, and no matter what way he decides there is no real winner.

If he calls a special election, it would make a lot of people happy but it would be constitutionally suspect since the State Constitution provides for appointments in the case of immediate vacancies until the nearest election date.

Fansler could opt to order the Commission to "re-do" the appointment process of January 31, but if this is the option he decides then there is nothing to legally prevent the appointment of the very same people and with a rehash of similar complaints of nepotism and pre-planned outcomes.

The Chancellor could choose to do nothing pending February elections, but that would make the verdict moot and the entire trial a meaningless waste of the time and money of the people of Knox County.

Probably the fairest choice would be to order all of the term-limited officials back to their old posts pending scheduled elections that would remedy and resolve the whole affair in one fell swoop. That would return to office some of the very people the public deem responsible for causing the crisis by not abiding by the term limits approved by Knox County voters in 1994. No matter what way that Fansler chooses, someone could make a good argument that his ruling is wrong.

Considering these circumstances, I am sure it isn't killing anyone to give Daryl Fansler all the time that he needs to make the best judgement that he can.



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