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Templeton sworn in at 172nd

By Chris Moore

chris.moore@panews.com

 

BEAUMONT — Surrounded by friends and family, with his hand on the Bible his deceased father gave him, newly elected 172nd District Court Judge Mitch Templeton was sworn in at the Jefferson County Courthouse on Friday.

His predecessor Donald Floyd, who held the seat for 28 years, did the honors. Although the two candidates represent different political parties — Templeton is a Republican; Floyd, a Democrat — the latter seemed pleased to pass the torch.

Templeton attended the swearing-in ceremonies for Democrats on Wednesday and a few Democrats attended Templeton’s.

“I already attended New Judges School,” Templeton said during his speech. “One of the things the director told us was he was going to bring us off the campaign trail. That process is over and you have to be a judge for all of the people. I guarantee you I will do that and I will serve you objectively and fairly.”

Templeton said he would also like to see a change to the swearing-in schedules.

“I came to the swearing for the Democratic candidates that won,” Templeton said. “I just want to suggest something to the county: I want to suggest going forward — and I’m speaking to both leaders of both parties — if we swear people in, we should do it jointly. It’s just a suggestion. I know I’m the new guy. As public servants, we serve everybody, no matter their political stripe.”

Templeton said he enjoyed the political process and had to come down afterwards.

“Once that process, that crucible is over, we need to get to work for all of the people. If we continue to separate and segregate ourselves, we continue that divide.”

Templeton said he is aware of the shoes, or robe, he will fill.

“(Floyd) set a high bar,” Templeton said. “He set a high ethical standard. I fully intend to meet that. I’m not intimidated by that. It’s a natural and good pressure.”

Floyd was known for guiding his courtroom under Judge Floyd’s Top Ten List of Things Not To Do When Examining A Witness. Templeton said those who step in his court should expect to follow the same rules.

“I absolutely will have them,” he said. “I’ve already looked at them and am in the process of having my name put on them.”

After being sworn in, Templeton’s sons, Caleb and Joshua Templeton, robed their father.