The wisdom of selecting judges on merit was slow to take root in the Sunshine State. It had been advocated since the 1940s, first by the Florida State Bar Association and then by the official Florida Bar, but a notoriously malapportioned, rural-dominated legislature was sterile ground. By the mid-1970s, however, circumstances had become ripe—and in a sense pungent—to accomplish in part what had seemed impossible.
Martin A. Dyckman,
How Florida Accepted Merit Retention: Nothing Succeeds Quite Like a Scandal,
64 Fla. L. Rev.
Available at: http://scholarship.law.ufl.edu/flr/vol64/iss5/11