Neville keeps seat in crowded primary for Supreme Court

U.S. Court Watch

Illinois Supreme Court Justice P. Scott Neville Jr. has won the primary election to keep his seat on the state’s highest court, emerging from a field of a six other Democrats.

No Republicans ran, making him the presumed winner in November for the 10-year term.

Democrat Charles Freeman, who died earlier this month at 86, held the post from 1990 to 2018, when he retired. He was the court’s first black judge. Neville, who is black, was appointed to complete the term. He was formerly an Illinois First District Appellate Court justice,

“Illinois’ population is diverse, and our courts, at all levels, should reflect our diversity,” Neville said in a Wednesday statement. “I applaud Cook County’s voters because your votes indicate that you are committed to diversity.”

The other challengers included five 1st District appellate justices: Cynthia V. Cobbs, Shelly A. Harris, Nathaniel Roosevelt Howse, Margaret Stanton McBride and Jesse G. Reyes. Also running was former private-practice attorney Daniel Epstein.

Neville was in the lead late Tuesday with Reyes trailing him, but the race was too close for The Associated Press to call.

In the other Supreme Court race, David K. Overstreet defeated state appellate court colleague John Barberis Jr. for the Republican nomination in the southern Illinois district held by retiring Republican Justice Lloyd Karmeier. In November, Overstreet faces another appellate court justice, Judy Cates, who was unopposed in the Democratic primary.

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