Voters retain four Madison County judges

Despite a grassroots initiative aimed at booting four Madison County judges from the bench, voters on Tuesday voted to retain all four of them for another six years. Citizens for Judicial Integrity (CFJI) launched an anti-retention campaign earlier this fall against Madison County Chief Judge Ann Callis and Circuit Judges Barbara Crowder, Dave Hylla and John Knight, all of whom were up for retention in Tuesday’s election. Crowder faced the most scrutiny from the group, which pointed to last year’s controversy over campaign contributions from asbestos attorneys to Crowder to say there is an appearance that Madison County judges are for sale. Circuit judges in Illinois must receive 60 percent “yes” votes in order to be retained for a six year term. Supreme and Appellate Court justices need the same percentage, but they get retained to a 10 year term. Madson County election results show that: -          Callis received 76,277“yes” votes (68%) and 35,811 “no” votes; -          Crowder received 68,860 “yes” votes (63%) and 41,165 “no” votes; -          Hylla received 70, 436 “yes” votes (65%) and 38,234 “no” votes; and -          Knight received 68,326 “yes” votes (63%) and 39,795 “no” votes. In addition, voters on Tuesday retained Fifth District Appellate Court Justice Melissa Chapman, Illinois Supreme Court Justice Rita Garman and St. Clair County Circuit Judge Jan Fiss. Voters also elected St. Clair County Associate Judge Andrew Gleeson to a circuit judgeship.

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