Sebelius to name new justice on Friday

? Gov. Kathleen Sebelius will announce her choice for the Kansas Supreme Court on Friday, her office said.

Two of the three finalists are from Lawrence. They are Douglas County District Judge Robert Fairchild and Martha Coffman, an advisory counsel to the Kansas Corporation Commission.

Shawnee County District Judge Eric Rosen, of Topeka, is the third finalist.

Sebelius’ pick will fill a vacancy on the seven-member court created when Justice Robert Gernon, of Lawrence, died in March.

Sebelius has set a news conference for 11:30 a.m. Friday to announce the appointment, which has generated added interest because of recent decisions by the court that have angered some in the Legislature.

This year, the court has overturned the Kansas death penalty and required lawmakers to increase school funding.

Several proposals are being considered to limit the court or make justices seek election. Currently, justices are appointed by the governor and then face retention votes.