Forced out by age, Michigan Supreme Court Justice Marilyn Kelly retiring

Dec 31, 2012

DETROIT (AP) - Michigan Supreme Court Justice Marilyn Kelly is retiring Tuesday, but not by choice.

The 74-year-old Kelly couldn't run again because the state Constitution bars judicial candidates from seeking office if they're 70 or older. She hopes voters someday will eliminate that restriction.

Kelly was chief justice for two years, but the Democrat has spent most of her 16 years in the minority on the Supreme Court. Conservative Republicans control the court, 4-3.

She says the Supreme Court is too far "off to the right," a complaint she's made in many dissenting opinions. She disagrees with key decisions that have tightened access to the trial courts, especially in injury cases.

Kelly plans to teach at Wayne State University law school and push for changes in how justices get elected.