Monday, December 05, 2011

Judicial candidate filing ended today

There were a lot of new judicial hopefuls stepping forward today as the filing period ended. The new filers seem to have concentrated on particular races. We'll get to these in posts in the next couple of days.

But, first, however, it might be appropriate to stop and congratulate those individuals, all of whom will be unopposed in March -- and in November as well. In theory, an independent candidate could come forward to challenge any one of these unopposed candidates, but the obstacles to getting on the ballot are very high. Thus, presumptively elected because no one filed to run against them are:

For the Appellate Court

Justice Maureen Elizabeth Connors -- Theis vacancy

For the Circuit Court, Countywide

Judge Jean Prendergast Rooney -- Jordan vacancy
Judge Russell W. Hartigan -- Moran vacancy

For the Circuit Court, Subcircuits

Judge Laura Liu -- 8th Subcircuit -- "A" vacancy
Martin C. Kelley -- 13th Subcircuit -- "A" vacancy
Judge Regina Ann Scannicchio -- 14th Subcircuit -- O'Gara vacancy

Note that all of these individuals are Democrats -- with one exception. Martin C. Kelley, like all candidates in the northwest suburban 13th Subcircuit, filed as a Republican. On the other hand, no Republican filed filed for any of the 11 countywide Circuit Court vacancies or any of the five vacancies on the First District of the Appellate Court.

I will leave it to others to explain what this means for the health of the two party system in Cook County. What it also means is voters who fail to vote in the Democratic Party primary on March 20, 2012 will be almost completely disenfranchised; they will have no say at all in who serves as judge in Cook County. People who 'never vote in primaries' can expect, in November, to have a choice between Democratic and Republican candidates only in the 4th and 12th Subcircuits.

1 comment:

Albert said...

There hasn't been a primary contest in the 14th since 1992. That's zero for eleven, and this one will make it twelve. What are the odds, nudge nudge.

Also interesting that two or three of the others are certainly beatable with the right challenger, and yet everybody stayed away. Poor strategizing by some candidates.