A former Tennessee Supreme Court justice from Chattanooga and a prominent Chattanooga attorney are part of a new group seeking to keep the "Tennessee plan" retention process for judges.
Mickey Barker and Max Bahner are part of Tennesseans for Fair and Impartial Courts.
The group has sent out a fundraising letter that suggests a $1,500 level of giving for a law firm.
The letter says the retention plan - involving a yes or no vote for a sitting judge - has worked well since it was crafted in 1971.
It says recently there has been "an effort to replace our merit-based system with statewide partisan elections."
The letter says such elections "would lead to multi-million-dollar campaigns driven by political agendas and special interests. Moreover, these campaigns would cast a cloud of bias over our judicial system."
Former gubernatorial candidate John Jay Hooker, a longtime foe of the retention process, has been critical of the new group.
He said the Tennessee plan "was borne in politics" in order to protect Democratic judges at a time when Republicans were on the rise in the state.