Related to:

Opinion Opinion 2006-1

Date: 10/23/2006
Organization: Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court

Ethical Opinions for Clerks of the Courts

Attendance at mayor's inaugural ball

Dear Assistant Clerk:

This is in response to your request for the Committee's opinion on the following question. You are an Assistant Clerk Magistrate in the _______ District Court and you inquire whether you may attend "the Mayor's Inaugural Ball". You state that tickets for the event cost $30.00, and that you do not know how the ticket money will be used.

Because the Committee is authorized only to interpret the Code of Professional Responsibility for Clerks of the Courts, we construe your request as inquiring whether the Code would prohibit your attending the inaugural ball. In Opinion 2003-1 , the Committee, when faced with a similar question, stated that "a public, post-election inauguration is, in our estimation, a ceremonial, as opposed to political, event and attendance does not appear to constitute an endorsement of a candidate since the election has concluded. Moreover, the festivities do not appear to be a politically sponsored event at which a prohibited activity, such as fundraising, would occur." It is the opinion of the members that the same considerations discussed in Opinion 2003-1 govern your attendance at the mayor's inaugural ball. In our view, the post-election celebration is predominantly a ceremonial event and your attendance would not be prohibited by the Code.


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