Speed Reads

Sober as a Judge?

Candidate for Minnesota Supreme Court convicted of refusing breathalyzer test

Well, this might not look good.

Michelle MacDonald, a candidate this November for the Minnesota Supreme Court, was convicted Wednesday on charges stemming from a traffic stop in April 2013, in which she refused to submit to a breathalyzer test — or even exit the car — after police suspected she might be driving drunk.

MacDonald will appeal her convictions on resisting arrest and refusal of the breath test, the Star Tribune reports — but she will not appeal her conviction for speeding.

MacDonald is running against incumbent Justice David Lillehaug, who was appointed to the bench last year by Democratic Gov. Mark Dayton. She was endorsed by the state Republican Party at their convention in May — and then her previous arrest became public a month later. Since then, the situation has posed a series of political difficulties for the state GOP:

Republican Party members attempted to bar her entry from their Minnesota State Fair booth last month. Officials also asked her to "repudiate" her endorsement. She declined and filed a complaint earlier this month against the party and several members, alleging that they attempted to coerce her into renouncing her endorsement. The complaint was dismissed by an administrative law judge. [Star Tribune]

MacDonald's sentencing is scheduled for Nov. 12 — about a week after the election. In addition, the judge in the case has ordered a psychological evaluation for her.