Question: The Mississippi Commission on Judicial Performance found that you did not have the proper authority to issue subpoenas to two county supervisors to appear before you in a meeting on February 11, 2009. At the meeting you admitted you failed to comply with the law but said you didn’t care. The Commission recommended to the Mississippi Supreme Court that you be reprimanded and fined. The Supreme Court has not yet issued its decision. Do you agree with the recommendation by the Commission on Judicial Performance?
Buffington: Absolutely. I messed up. Sixteen years you make some mistakes….I was frustrated; I’ll be just as honest as I can be. I had asked the Simpson County Board of Supervisors to meet with me because there had been a controversy about an appointment that I made, a great appointment, a very qualified person, a needed appointment. Three of the supervisors agreed to meet with me. Unfortunately, one of the supervisors particularly said he wanted a subpoena or an order. The other supervisor I was told said the same thing. So out of frustration, because I have always met with the board. If they asked me to meet with them about any kind of situation and I’ve met with the board. And I thought that, not that they owed me anything, but they owed the office the respect, to meet with me. So I did. Before I thought, I issued the subpoena. The thing about the subpoena was I could have issued the subpoena if I had just set forth what it was. I did not set forth in the subpoena the reason. I made a mistake. I accepted that responsibility. The judicial performance committee has made a recommendation on it and I am in full agreement with it.