An area lawmaker wants to clarify Illinois law so a judge who is up for election can only run for retention to remain on the bench in the same post.  Republican Charlie Meier of Okawville cited three cases in St. Clair County where judges chose to run for election instead of retention.

Running for election requires only a 50-percent majority from voters, while a retention vote would require 60-percent approval.  Meier believes the state constitution is clear, but filed legislation last week to give the law a little more strength:

Click for Meier comment

St. Clair County Judges John Baricevic, Robert Haida and Robert LeChien all resigned on December 4 then filed to run for election as Democrats in the March 15 primary.   Baricevic has said the judges expected a strong retention challenge and believed running for election rather than retention provides a better opportunity to defend themselves against negative campaigning. 


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