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|Clark preps for Supreme Court duties|
After a whirlwind campaign for Louisiana Supreme Court, 4th Judicial District Court Judge Marcus Clark says he's happy to have a few weeks to recover before taking his seat on the state's highest court.
Clark admitted Tuesday he was still tired from all the campaigning for the 4th District seat on the state Supreme Court. Clark was elected to the Supreme Court Saturday in a light voter turnout.
Clark, a Republican from West Monroe, captured some 28,521 votes to 25,495 votes for his opponent, Jimmy Faircloth. Faircloth, a Republican from Pineville, stepped down as Gov. Bobby Jindal's executive counsel to run for the Supreme Court.
Clark was elected to succeed Justice Chet Traylor, R-Winnsboro. Traylor retired from the bench in late May to pursue a legal career in private practice.
Clark's showing in his home parish of Ouachita made his election possible. Some 14,253 Ouachita voters threw their support to Clark while Faircloth pulled 5,322 votes here.
"I'm trying to recover from a long campaign, but obviously, I am very excited and very pleased," Clark said. "My whole family and a lot of my supporters were there with me Saturday as the results came in. We had a big congregation of people, but I spent most of my time watching the results."
"Then the phones started ringing," he said.
Clark said numerous people called to congratulate him. Chief Justice Catherine D. Kimball also called Clark Saturday to congratulate him.
"I'm very pleased with the people who knew me best, who all saw me work as a prosecutor and judge, for them to come out overwhelmingly for me and see through the political rhetoric," Clark said. "That meant a lot to me."
"I felt the voters in this area would see through the negative campaigning and let everyone know that it would not be tolerated," he added.
Clark expects to be sworn in sometime in November.
In the meantime, he said there are still several cases he needs to hear and sentences he must hand down before he resigns from the 4th Judicial District Court.
Fourth Judicial District Judge Ben Jones was appointed to fill Traylor's seat on the Supreme Court until the Oct. 17 special election could be held.
Former 4th Judicial District Judge John Harrison has been the ad hoc judge for Jones while he performed his duties on the Supreme Court.
Clark expects when he leaves for the Supreme Court and Jones returns to the 4th Judicial District Court, Harrison will fill Clark's seat until an election can be held in the fall of 2010.
Clark said he will maintain his residence in West Monroe and have an office located in Monroe once he assumes the Supreme Court seat.
"Having to plan for this transition and an upcoming swearing-in ceremony … well, it's a good problem to have," Clark said.