Bad Blood Continues between Judicial Candidate, Bar Association
Warmbir, Steve, Daily Herald (Arlington Heights, IL)
Judge Morton Zwick, running for the state Supreme Court, refused on Monday to defend his controversial campaign commercial before the Chicago Bar Association, which in turn downgraded Zwick's rating to "not recommended."
The group had asked Zwick, an appellate court judge, to appear before the association Monday to answer questions about a TV ad that criticizes one of Zwick's opponents, Judge Thomas Fitzgerald.
But Zwick questioned whether he would get a fair hearing.
"I think that the pond has been poisoned," he said.
The debate centers around a commercial that tries to link Fitzgerald, who presides over the Cook County's criminal courts, to troubled prosecutions resulting in innocent men going to death row.
Last week, the bar association blasted the commercial, saying it could mislead voters.
The association argued that the commercial implies Fitzgerald presided over those trials of innocent men, when he did not. The group also said the ad uses newspaper quotes out of context.
On Monday, Zwick defended the ad as "good and fair."
"I think that there's no validity that there could be a misimpression," he said.
Zwick said it's only fair that Fitzgerald be held responsible for some of the negative things that happened during his watch, since he's taking credit for the positives.
But Zwick has faced blistering criticism from those who question if the ad undermines the integrity of the judicial election process. …