Judge Evan Broadbelt (defendant) had been a municipal court judge in New Jersey since 1982. Broadbelt regularly appeared as a legal commentator on national and local news. Broadbelt was not paid for these television appearances. In December 1994, Judge Lawrence Lawson requested that all municipal court judges notify the assignment judge before appearing on television. Lawson twice gave Broadbelt permission to appear on the television show Geraldo Live. However, in March 1995, Lawson withdrew his approval and asked Broadbelt not to appear on television again. Broadbelt noted his disagreement with the decision. Lawson referred the issue to the Advisory Committee on Extrajudicial Activities (Committee). The Committee issued an opinion that Broadbelt’s activities did not conform with Canon 2 of New Jersey’s Code of Judicial Conduct (Code). The Supreme Court of New Jersey granted review.