The theory -- and there is statistical evidence to back this up -- is that the top ballot position is worth something in a judicial primary election. The ballot bump varies from election cycle to election cycle, but snagging that top spot means more votes.
Thus, in the race for the "A" vacancy in the 6th Subcircuit, Judge Anna Loftus must be considered a 'winner' for securing the top spot in yesterday's ballot lottery, conducted by the Illinois State Board of Elections. Edward J. Underhill snagged the second spot, while slated candidate Carlos Claudio drew third place. These three candidates were in the lottery because their nominating petitions were deemed filed as soon as the doors opened at the ISBE on the morning of November 23.
Colleen Reardon Daly won the top spot in the race for the Howard vacancy in the 10th Subcircuit. Slated candidate Stephanie Saltouros came in second, while Judge Eve Marie Reilly, who holds the seat pursuant to Supreme Court appointment, came in third. Michael John Malatesta was fourth in the ballot lottery for this seat and Richard "Rick" Cenar came in fifth. The sixth candidate, Timothy Matthew McQuillen, did not file his nominating papers until the last day of the filing period and was therefore not included in the lottery for the top ballot line.
Judge Patricia S. "Pat" Spratt did not need the ballot lottery to maintain the top spot in the race for the Rivkin-Carothers vacancy in that crowded 7th Subcircuit race: She was the only remaining candidate in the field who was counted as in line to file on the first day of filing. (A second lottery-eligible candidate, Brian O'Hara, withdrew from that race in order to seek the countywide Karnezis vacancy.)
O'Hara was also eligible for the lottery for the top ballot position in that countywide race, but he came in third, behind Mary Kathleen McHugh and Judge Devlin J. Schoop. Tom Courtney drew the last spot.
Judge Rossana Patricia Fernandez finished third (of three candidates) in the ballot lottery for the top spot in the race for the countywide Elrod vacancy. Scott Edward Lipinski has the top spot, followed by Thomas Francis McGuire. A fourth candidate in this race, Joseph Chico, withdrew his candidacy yesterday, according to the ISBE.
Michael I. O'Malley holds the top ballot position in his one-on-one challenge against Judge Alison C. Conlon. Both John E. Marszalek, who snagged the top spot, and William Wojcik finished ahead of Judge Daniel Patrick Duffy in the lottery for the top ballot position in the Ruscitti Grussel vacancy. A fourth candidate, Monica M. Torres-Linares was not eligible for that lottery because she filed later.
Judge Gerald V. Cleary won the top spot in the drawing for the top line for the Walsh vacancy. All four candidates were eligible for the lottery in this race. Patrick Joseph Powers and Kevin Patrick Cunningham finished second and third, respectively. Judge Fredrick H. Bates, the slated candidate, finished fourth.
In the 1st Subcircuit, Jesse Outlaw was awarded the top ballot position over Judge Maryam Ahmad in the race for the Brim vacancy. In the Hopkins vacancy, however, Judge Anthony E. Simpkins got the top line over Rhonda Crawford. (The third candidate in that race, Lisa A. Copland, was not eligible for the lottery.)
Celeste K. Jones won the lottery for the top spot in the race to fill the 2nd Subcircuit vacancy. Chelsey R. Robinson and D. Renee Jackson finished second and third, respectively. Travis Richardson was not eligible for the lottery.
Of course, there are challenges pending in many of these races, and the outcome of those proceedings may shake up the ballot order further.
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