ICJL mulls over retention position

By Ann Knef | Oct 5, 2006

Madison County Chief Judge Ann Callis

St. Clair County Chief Judge Jan Fiss

The Illinois Civil Justice League (ICJL) is expected to announce whether or not it will endorse judicial candidates seeking retention in Madison and St. Clair counties in a few days.

Ed Murnane, president of the ICJL, said meetings with Madison County Circuit Judges Ann Callis, Charles Romani and John Knight and St. Clair County Circuit Judge Jan Fiss on Wednesday were "cordial."

"The judges in Madison County and St. Clair County were open and frank," he said. "They acknowledged that there have been some concerns and issues within the judiciary that have been problems."

"I appreciated the time they gave," he said.

Murnane said he would make a report to the ICJL's executive committee. After discussion, the group will make a decision by the end of the week or early next week, Murnane said.

"The issue comes down to what is in the best interest of fairness and justice in Madison and St. Clair counties," Murnane said. "It doesn't make any difference if they are Republican or Democrat."

All judges seeking retention in the two counties are running as Democrats.

Last week the ICJL endorsed St. Clair County Circuit Judge Milton Wharton, a Democrat seeking retention, and Paul Evans, a Republican running against Circuit Judge Lloyd Cueto.

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