April 26, 2019
Stay Informed: Know Your Judiciary
Judicial elections are normally overlooked in favor of the more popular political elections going on in November. However, it’s important for the public to know who is currently sitting on the bench, to get unbiased information on the judicial candidates and make informed choices when heading to the polls on Election Day. Our judiciary has a significant impact on individuals, corporations and society as a whole.
November is still pretty far away, but the Columbus Bar Association starts the process of evaluating current judges on the bench early. Toward the end of April, attorneys throughout Franklin County will answer a short poll evaluating the performance of sitting judges. To keep it balanced, attorneys will only answer questions about judges who they have appeared before in the last two years. This helps keep the poll fair and honest.
Each judge is rated on a scale from one to five on a number of different categories, including: objectivity, legal knowledge, opinion quality, timeliness and more. Once the poll closes, all of the results are tallied in each category to give average ratings for each individual judge by category.
All judges who have been on the bench for at least a year are included in this poll. It’s an informative way for the public to learn more about their judiciary.
These results also come in handy as we get closer to the election in November and the CBA’s Judicial Screening Committee steps in to evaluate each of the judicial candidates in the race. The CBA endeavors to ensure that this Committee is balanced with Democrats, Republicans and Independents. The Committee will hold interviews with each candidate and use that interview, as well as the results from the Performance Poll, to provide unbiased and nonpartisan information on all candidates who are sitting judges in a contested race that election year.
All of these results will be released to the public on the CBA’s website (cbalaw.org) and on our special judicial candidates page, www.JudgetheCandidates.org.