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A federal judge has rejected a challenge to Iowa's judicial nominating and retention system.

U.S. District Court Judge Robert Pratt on Wednesday granted Iowa Attorney General Tom Miller's request to dismiss the lawsuit filed by four conservative activists who claimed the system gives too much power to attorneys who elect members of the state's Judicial Nominating Commission. That panel recommends judicial appointments to the governor.

The lawsuit was filed after voters ousted three state Supreme Court justices for their role in a decision that legalized same-sex marriage in Iowa.

Iowa voters approved the nominating and retention system in 1962 but an attorney for the activists who filed the lawsuit claims it gives too much power to seven commission members who are elected by licensed attorneys.

In his decision, Pratt says the argument is "fatally flawed" and does not demonstrate a constitutional violation.


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