Monday, October 27, 2014

Cook County Bar Association releases judicial candidate ratings

The Cook County Bar Association is a member of the Alliance of Bar Associations for Judicial Screening, so regular FWIW readers have already seen the candidate ratings it has issued in both contested and retention elections.

However, for those who may not have previously seen the Alliance retention grids or other, prior posts on the largely uncontested elections for current judicial vacancies, the CCBA ratings may be of interest.

There are only two contests in elections for judicial vacancies and these just happen to be the only two races in which the CCBA has issued "Not Recommended" ratings. In the race for the 12th Subcircuit vacancy, Republican James Pieczonka was rated "Not Recommended." His opponent, Judge James L. Kaplan is rated "Recommended." In the race for the 4th Subcircuit Billik vacancy, the Republican candidate, Ian Brenson, was "Not Evaluated" while the Democratic nominee, Assistant State's Attorney John J. Mahoney was rated "Not Recommended." Two persons who are uncontested in their bids for their respective countywide vacancies, both of them judges appointed to the bench by the Illinois Supreme Court, were rated "Highly Recommended" by the CCBA. These are Judges Cynthia Y. Cobbs and Andrea Michele Buford.

On the retention ballot, the CCBA urges a "no" vote for only three judges. These are Themis N. Karnezis, Ann O’Donnell, and Laura Marie Sullivan. With the exception of a couple of judges who were not evaluated by the CCBA, the CCBA urges a "yes" vote on all other retention candidates, including Appellate Court Justice Thomas Hoffman, seeking another term on the Appellate Court and Judge Thomas E. Flanagan, the one judge not recommended by the Chicago Bar Association. (Judge Flanagan was recommended for retention by each of the other Alliance bar groups as well.)

For more information about the retention ballot, you may wish to see these posts:
Voters in the far north suburban 12th Subcircuit or far west suburban 4th Subcircuit may also find these posts helpful:

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