DANVILLE — On-the-job experience proved important to voters in the sole county-wide office race in Tuesday’s primary election.
Attorneys Dan Brown and Edwin Barney and Associate Circuit Judge Karen Wall were running for an open seat on the bench in Vermilion County Circuit Court. The trio — all Democrats — was jockeying to fill the seat left open by the October retirement of longtime circuit judge Michael Clary.
Voters, at the end of the evening, opted for experience on the bench, selecting Wall over Barney and Brown. Wall received 56 percent, 335 votes, in the City of Danville as of 10 p.m. and three precincts yet to be counted. Brown followed with 27 percent, 161 votes, and Barney with 16 percent, 97 votes.
In the county, Wall claimed a much larger margin of victory for voters, bringing in 58 percent, 810 votes, in the polls with all 59 precincts reporting. Brown was second with 23 percent, 320 votes, followed by Barney with 18 percent, 248 votes.
Wall now moves to the November general election to race the Republican candidate for judge, current county recorder Thomas O’Shaughnessy.
In Tuesday night’s primary election, two first-timers will get their chance to sit on the Vermilion County Board in December.
For District 1, Republican and current board member Todd Johnson of Rossville faced off against GOP challengers Larry Baughn of Hoopeston and Darrell Cambron of rural Rankin. The win was overwhelming as Johnson received 46 percent, 640 votes, followed by Baughn with 44 percent, 604 votes, and Cambron with 9 percent, 127 votes.
In District 5, Democrat John Criswell of Tilton faced challenges from Danville Township trustee Chad Turner of Danville and former county board member Robert “Jim” Watson of Tilton.
Turner turned to be the top vote getter among the District 5 candidates, pulling in a total of 28 percent, 123 votes, compared to incumbent Criswell, who received 25 percent, 109 votes, followed by Watson with 22 percent, 92 votes.