Remember how I told you that everyone who won their primary race in March (with the exception of a handful of outliers in the far north and northwest suburban 12th and 13th Subcircuits) was pretty much guaranteed of election in November?
Well, as ESPN pundit Lee Corso might say, not so fast, my friend!
According to the Illinois State Board of Elections website, attorney Rhonda Sallee has filed as an independent candidate seeking the Williams vacancy in the 5th Subcircuit.
According to my archives, Sallee's is the first independent judicial bid filed in Cook County since 2010. Two candidates filed as independents for judicial office that year; neither made it to the November ballot.
The Election Code makes it difficult for judicial candidates to enter a party primary; there are large signature requirements and very particular rules about how those signatures are collected and arranged and what must be filed along with them. But these requirements, onerous as they may be, pale in comparison to those imposed on a would-be independent bid: The signature requirements are much, much greater than those required of a candidate seeking to file in an established party primary.
So Ms. Sallee's candidacy may falter without her ever making it to the ballot.
If she overcomes any objections to her petitions, however, Sallee's November opponent would be Daryl Jones. Jones won the Democratic race for the Williams vacancy in the March primary.
Sallee has been an attorney in Illinois since 1999. According to the ARDC, Sallee maintains a law office in the Chicago Temple Building across the street from the Daley Center. Sallee's LinkedIn page notes that she has also served as a hearing officer for the ARDC, as an arbitrator in the Cook County Mandatory Court-Annexed Arbitration System, and as administrative law judge (though the LinkedIn page does not specify the agency for which she works, or has worked). Sallee was a countywide judicial candidate in 2012.
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