RSLC’s Judicial Fairness Initiative Supports Copeland for Court of Appeals

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David James

RSLC’s Judicial Fairness Initiative Supports Copeland for Court of Appeals

New Ad Exposes Judge Bart Virden’s Opinion Overturning A Rape Conviction on a Technicality

WASHINGTON – The Republican State Leadership Committee’s Judicial Fairness Initiative launched a new broadcast and cable television ad today in the race for Arkansas’ Court of Appeals.  The ad, titled Overturned, exposes a case in which Judge Bart Virden wrote the opinion overturning a jury’s conviction of a habitual rapist on a technicality.  Judge Virden’s shocking opinion can be read here.

“The Judicial Fairness Initiative seeks opportunities to support conservative judges who support the law and the needs of the victim, like former prosecutor Judge Johnnie Copeland,” said Matt Walter, President of the Republican State Leadership Committee.  “As recently reported by the Baxter Bulletin, Judge Copeland’s work on the Fulton County District Court ‘has led to better communication with law enforcement, quicker turnaround time on search and arrest warrants, and better collection of fines and fees from guilty parties,’” Walter added.

The script of Overturned follows:

Violent convicts pray for judges like Bart Virden.

Virden OVERTURNED a jury’s conviction of a habitual rapist on a technicality.

Leaving his victims without justice.

Judge Virden isn’t part of the solution—he’s part of the problem.

But Arkansas families are safe with Judge Johnnie Copeland.

A former prosecutor, Copeland upholds the rule of law, so victims, and criminals, receive justice.

Copeland for Court of Appeals.


The RSLC’s Judicial Fairness Initiative (JFI), launched in 2014, works to elect down-ballot, state-level conservatives to the judiciary.  Through JFI, the RSLC became the only national political organization focused exclusively on the electoral process of judicial branches at the state level.  Too often voters are starved of information about judicial candidates up for election and forced to vote completely in the dark.  To address this critically important need, JFI provides the public with a balanced flow of relevant information to make educated decisions and support common sense conservative judges at the state level.

About the RSLC

The Republican State Leadership Committee (RSLC) is the largest caucus of Republican state leaders in the country and the only national organization whose mission is to elect Republicans to multiple down-ballot, state-level offices. Since 2002, the RSLC has been working to elect candidates to the offices of lieutenant governor, secretary of state, state legislator, the judiciary and other down-ticket races. After Election Night 2017, state-level Republicans maintain 67 of 99 legislative chamber majorities in red, purple and blue states, hold 31 lieutenant governor seats, and control 30 secretaries of state offices. To learn more about the RSLC, please visit or follow @RSLC on Twitter.