Monday, October 08, 2018

Alliance grids in the five contested subcircuit races

* Stepping up on soapbox *

Many voters who did not participate in the March primaries will be surprised to find that, when they go to the polls on November 6 (or sooner, if voting early), nearly all of the Cook County judicial races are already decided.

No Republicans filed for any countywide Circuit Court vacancy. No Republicans filed for most Subcircuit vacancies.

For that matter, no Greens, no Conservatives, and no Libertarians filed for any countywide or subcircuit Circuit Court vacancy. There are candidates running under the banner of each of these parties on the November ballot -- but not in judicial races.

Accordingly, in all countywide and most Cook County subcircuit judicial races, the winners of the Democratic primaries -- back last March -- will take office on the first Monday in December.

Fortunately for all of us, all, or nearly all, of these presumptive winners are both good, qualified persons, and well-regarded by most of the evaluating bar groups besides. But this is not the way you learned how things are supposed to work back when you took civics.

Do schoolkids still take civics?

Anyway, some people will inevitably grouse that they had no choices in most Cook County judicial elections; some will use this as an argument that we should do away with the election of judges altogether. What these people should do instead is remember to vote in primaries in future... or, better still, work for the abolition of partisan judicial primaries... because electing judges in a partisan primary process could lead to the election of, you know, partisan judges -- which some people -- just looking at my news feeds recently -- seem to view as a bad idea.

* Stepping down from soapbox *

Voters in the far north-suburban 12th Subcircuit and far south-suburban 15th Subcircuit will have a say in the election of one judge each. Voters in the far northwest suburban 13th Subcircuit will have a say in the election of three judges.

The members of the Alliance of Bar Associations for Judicial Screening have issued ratings for the candidates in each of these contested races. The "grids" issued by the Alliance in these races follow (click on any image to enlarge or clarify):

Here is a "key" to the abbreviations used in the Alliance grids.

Raings provided by Alliance members are advisory only and do not constitute an endorsement of any candidacy.

The Alliance of Bar Associations for Judicial Screening is comprised of the Asian American Bar Association of the Greater Chicago Area (AABA), the Black Women Lawyers’ Association of Greater Chicago (BWLA), the Chicago Council of Lawyers (CCL), the Cook County Bar Association (CCBA), the Decalogue Society of Lawyers (DSL), the Hellenic Bar Association of Illinois (HBA), the Hispanic Lawyers Association of Illinois (HLAI), the Illinois State Bar Association (ISBA), the Lesbian and Gay Bar Association of Chicago (LAGBAC), the Puerto Rican Bar Association of Illinois (PRBA), and the Women’s Bar Association of Illinois (WBAI), all working collaboratively to improve the process of screening judicial candidates in Cook County, Illinois.

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