Those running for judge may not have campaign ads or mass mailers to help voters learn about their qualifications, but they do have a recently released survey. The Illinois State Bar Association sends a judicial survey to thousands of attorneys statewide in hopes they’ll answer questions about judges they’ve appeared before in court. They’re asked to answer questions about a candidate’s temperament, legal ability, qualifications and other factors.
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Bar association president John Locallo says the judiciary affects everyone. “Judicial decisions are being made daily that affect our lives,” he says. “They’re creating a body of case law in doing that, and so you want to make sure that as a people we’re represented properly and fairly.” About 30 percent of those sent surveys responded for the 2012 primary. The Bar Association says “the minimum number of responses to consider a poll valid is 30 in polls of less than 1,000 lawyers; 60 for polls of between 1,000-1,999; 90 for polls of between 2,000-2,999; and 120 for polls of more than 3,000 lawyers.”