Friday, August 21, 2015

Ed Underhill announces 6th Subcircuit judicial bid; campaign website launched

Ed Underhill has announced his candidacy for judge in the 6th Subcircuit. That's a link to Underhill's campaign website in the preceding sentence (it has just gone live); a link has been added to the blog Sidebar as well.

Underhill has been licensed as an attorney in Illinois since 1984. He is a principal in the Chicago office of Masuda Funai. His work biography highlights his practice in "intellectual-property disputes, contract disputes, UCC disputes (including commercial warranty claims), dealer terminations, unfair competition, business torts, and limited non-commercial claims." It also states that Underhill has developed a significant ADR practice, representing clients in mediations and arbitrations. The work biography adds that Underhill is a "published playwright and short story writer," winning the Chicago Lawyer Fiction Contest in 1986. Underhill has also been "a finalist in various national fiction writing competitions," according to his work bio.

Underhill's campaign website notes that he has been a homeowner in the Bucktown neighborhood for 15 years (he lives with his husband, Liam, and their dog Finn, according to the website) and has been active in the Bucktown Community Organization. Also according to his campaign website, Underhill has served as a member of the Chicago Bar Association Judicial Evaluation Committee and is a former president of the Northern Illinois University Alumni Council.


Anonymous said...

Welcome to the party.
Very truly yours, E.P.

Anonymous said...

Por Dios!! Standby for comment on this announcement by E.P.

Anonymous said...

As we all know (or should know) by now, without significant political support from the Cook County Democratic Party; running for Judge is a waste of time and money. This is especially true in subcircuits like the 6th where the Democratic Committeemen have strong ward organizations and can mobilize literally hundreds of people for the slated candidates. I do not know who the political godfathers of Mr. Underhill might be - but - if he has none, "winning the Chicago Lawyer Fiction Contest" will not be his only notable literary work; as his 2016 Judicial campaign will most certainly be characterized as a tragedy after the votes are counted. Not Hispanic and not a particularly attractive ballot name do not help either; but America is the land of hopes and dreams; so - go ahead Ed, give it your best shot. My advice to you is that you do not even think about actually running (keep this to yourself) - but try to get an "IOU" from the political honchos that control that subcircuit in exchange for not running. This strategy has proven itself time and time again. The only two non Judges that were slated countywide this year both employed this strategy in 2014, and look at them now: both being measured for the black robe. Patience is the key. (And if anyone wants to know: No, I did not enjoy my 89 seconds at the Erie Cafe this past week. What a charade.)

Anonymous said...

The Top Three Rules of Judicial Campaigns:

Number One: Do not start your campaign with a “Press Conference” and then post silly staged photos of yourself shaking hands on Facebook. It is arrogant. Only Donald Trump has press conferences. Your campaign is not that important and as any newly appointed judge will tell you, Facebook is a no-no. Exception “A”: If at your press conference Joseph Berrios is sitting to your left and Louis Arroyo is to your right and one of them is holding the microphone while speak, you may have a press conference. Exception “B”: If Mary Kay Dawson is in attendance (in between fundraisers of course) sitting in the front row clapping enthusiastically each time you pause (and you are running countywide) you may have a press conference.

Number Two: Do not highlight something you deem a noteworthy accomplishment if it occurred in 1986. Just because it made your mom and dad gush with pride does not mean anyone else in Cook County cares. If Ronald Reagan was the president when it happened, keep it off of your campaign website. Exception “A”: If, however, you rescued a family member of Michael Madigan from a burning building, you may mention it. Exception “B”: If you prevented John Cullerton or any Supreme Court Justice from falling into an open elevator shaft, you may mention it.

Number Three: Under no circumstances state how many cats and dogs you live with and their names. No one cares and it shows you have nothing substantial, relevant, and timely to say about yourself. Exception “A”: If your beloved tabby cat is named Preckwinkles after your aunt Toni, you may mention it. Exception “B”: If your well trained chihuahua is named Louie, Joey, Wags, Procco, Richie, or Roberto after one of your uncles, you may mention it. Special Exception “C”: If you live in Skokie and your fish is named Lou, you can mention it. Special Exception “D”: If you live in Oak Park, are not hispanic, and your pet gerbil is named Donnie, stop reading this, call your local committeeman, your courtroom is waiting for you. Special Exception “E”: If Special Exception “D” applies to you but you are hispanic; still pick up the phone and call your local committeeman. No courtroom is in your future but being named the sixth or seventh countywide judicial alternate is a real possibility.

Jack Leyhane said...

@Anon 8:38 -- In fairness, I highlighted the Chicago Lawyer Fiction Contest from Mr. Underhill's work bio (not the campaign bio) because I thought it was interesting. You obviously don't. That's OK.

The other thing... 1986 doesn't seem that long ago to me. *Sigh*

Anonymous said...

Mr. Underhill, you may have concluded that this is a hotly contested subcircuit. You have every right to run. If you are asked your favorite food, say Jibarito, (J is pronounced as H in the 6th sub). As for your creative writing, you will fit right in in your subcircuit. I've reviewed a number of bar evaluations for the CCL of those who've went on to be judge, and many are quite creative when describing their experience and qualifications.

Anonymous said...

@Anon 8:38 - Funny as hell and right on all points. Keep those comments coming in - we will be up to two million page views long before a white gay man with a dog named Finn is elected in the 6th.

Anonymous said...

The internet is a funny thing. Sometimes it brings out the worst in people, who feel entitled to make any comment they wish from the comfort of their home or office computer.

I have read, and re-read and read again a recent comment on this blog, and something kept gnawing at me. I don't like censorship, or thought police or political correctness. I believe satire, sarcasm and acerbic wit are great vehicles for communication. Freud said "many a truth is said in jest," and I believe that feelings and opinions can often times best be communicated in witty ways.

Recently, however, a commenter made comments regarding Mr. Underhill that I view as both racist and homophobic. More troubling is the fact that someone truly believes that his or her neighbors in the 6th subcircuit are incapable of electing either a white and/or gay man.

The commenter touts diversity, but in reality wants homogeneity. In other words, if you come from the 6th subcircuit, you better damn well be Hispanic and straight, otherwise we are not going to give you a second look. How cynical, sad and bigoted.

I suspect if the commenter had switched around some adjectives, there would be outrage. Replace the words "white" and "gay" with Black, Hispanic, Asian, Jewish, Muslim or female and I assure you that people would be up in arms. The commenter cannot grasp the possibility that a white person or gay man might be an excellent judge and serve the people of the subcircuit well. I am always amazed when one minority group discriminates against another. The writer of the comment should be proud that Mr. Underhill is running. What a great time we live in! There is not a Hispanic monopoly on the "American Dream." Someone must always be the first to break barriers. Who would have thought that the largely African American 7th subcircuit would have elected a lesbian or a white male, but they did both last cycle.

Look at the U.S. Supreme Court. By first impressions, one would expect Clarence Thomas, a black man, and Antonin Scalia, a first generation American, to be ardent supporters of the rights of minorities and immigrants, but we know that is not the case. Who would expect that Justice Kennedy, a catholic, would be the deciding vote in favor of same-sex marriage?

You can't judge a book by its cover, and you can't determine that caliber of a judge by her race or sexual orientation. It is 2015 and you live north of the Mason-Dixon line. Be proud you live in a diverse community.