Springfield Judge Grants TRO on New Judicial Subcircuits Bill

By Benjamin Cox on January 26, 2022 at 10:15am

A Springfield judge has granted a temporary restraining order halting the implementation of new judicial subcircuits.

The order was issued yesterday morning by Illinois 7th Circuit Judge Ryan Cadigan in response to a lawsuit filed on Friday by Madison County State’s Attorney Thomas Haine. The suit challenges the constitutional muster of he subcircuit creation legislation approved January 5th in the General Assembly and signed January 7th by Governor J.B. Pritzker.

The four-page order prevents Pritzker, the Illinois State Board of Elections and the Clerk of the Illinois Supreme Court “from taking any steps to enforce or institute the Judicial Circuits Districting Act of 2022.” The 7th Judicial Circuit also fell under the act, which covers Morgan, Scott, Greene, and Sangamon counties among others with elections slated in those counties in 2024. The Madison County relief was sought because their judicial circuit has elections this Fall. With the TRO in place, Madison County will elect their judges at-large rather than in the subcircuit model. The filing comes one day before circulation of election petitions start in Madison County.

Haine told The Alton Telegraph that he will formally move for a preliminary injunction in the coming days asking the court to continue the order past February 15th, the date of the next court hearing in the case.