ISBA rates judicial candidates

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The Illinois State Bar Association has rated the candidates  for judicial seats ahead of the Nov. 6 election. The ratings come from an advisory poll and committee evaluation. 

The advisory poll is conducted by mail and is sent to all ISBA members in the circuit or district from which a candidate seeks election. Licensed attorneys who are not members of ISBA, or any attorney outside the circuit or district, may request a ballot.

Candidates seeking election to the appellate court also are reviewed via a comprehensive evaluation project.

This involves detailed background investigation by members of the ISBA Judicial Evaluations Committee, followed by an in-person interview of the candidate. The committee then decides whether to rate the candidate qualified, highly qualified or not qualified. 

Full results are available at isba.org/judicialevaluations.

In Monroe County, voters will choose in three judicial races and whether to retain three judges. 

In the race for Fifth Judicial District Appellate Court Judge, Democrat Kevin Hoerner is rated as highly qualified by the committee. 

The poll also found Hoerner to be recommended, with 86.94 percent of respondents saying he meets the requirements of the office. Hoerner rated above 90 percent on integrity, legal ability, temperament, court management, health and sensitivity. 

Hoerner is running against Republican David Overstreet, who the committee rated as highly qualified.      

In the poll, Overstreet is rated as recommended, with 82.89 percent of respondents saying he meets the requirements of the office. Overstreet rated above 90 percent on health.

 The Fifth District incorporates several area counties including Monroe, Randolph and St. Clair.

In the 20th Judicial Circuit Court Judge race, Democrat Heinz Rudolf is rated as recommended, with 96.73 percent of attorneys rating him as meeting the requirements of the office. He rated higher than 90 percent on every other category.

Republican Katherine Ruocco is rated as not recommended in the poll, with 9.68 percent of respondents saying she meets the requirements of the office. She did not rate higher than 90 percent in any category. 

Also in the 20th Judicial Circuit Court, Democrat John O’Gara is running for another judge position. 

He is rated as recommended, as 96.83 percent of respondents saying he meets the requirements of the office. He is rated over 90 percent in every other category. 

Republican Paul Evans is rated as not recommended, with 54.40 percent of respondents saying he meets the requirements of the office. He is not rated higher than 90 percent in any category.

The 20th Circuit Court presides over Monroe, Perry, Randolph, St. Clair and Washington counties. 

Monroe County voters must also vote if they want to retain Zina Cruise, Daniel Emge and Andrew Gleeson as judges on the 20th Circuit Court. 

All three are recommended in the poll, with 80, 95.5 and 90.4 percent of respondents saying they meet the requirements of the office, respectively.  

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