Raleigh, N.C. — Governor Bev Perdue is taking steps to name a Supreme Court justice before she leaves office in January.
Today she signed an executive order reversing an earlier executive order that required judicial appointments to be vetted by a commission made up of legal experts.
Supreme Court Justice Patricia Timmons- Goodson recently announced she will step down from the court Dec. 17. Perdue's Judicial selection panel would not have time to review her replacement by the time Perdue leaves office on Jan. 5.
The new executive order will allow Perdue to appoint her replacement as well as other judges.
"With respect to all judicial vacancies that currently exist or that may arise between the present date and the end of my term as Governor ... I will exercise my constitutional and statutory authority to fill the vacancies without first receiving nominations from the Commission. However, I plan to consult with individual members of the Commission as I deem appropriate to see their input regarding the qualifications of specific candidates for appointment," Perdue's new order reads. She encourages future governors to keep the commission in place.
Chris Mackey, a spokeswoman for Perdue, said the governor has not chosen a replacement for Timmons-Goodson.
Republicans have been critical of Perdue's move to name a replacement to the court, saying she should leave it to governor-elect Pat McCrory.