To understand the potential for corruption or the appearance of corruption from big money in judicial elections, consider the experience of Hugh Caperton.

Caperton, represented by Theodore Olson of Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher, persuaded the U.S. Supreme Court in 2009 that his due-process rights had been violated by the failure of a justice of the West Virginia Supreme Court of Appeals to recuse himself from hearing a $50 million appeal by the man who spent an unprecedented amount of money to see the justice elected.