In yards all over Jackson, Bienville and Claiborne Parishes and along virtually every highway and backroad that runs through the three are campaign signs asking you to elect either Darrell Avery, Walter May, Yumeaka Robinson Washington or Rick Warren as Judge.
That’s four people running for a seat. Simple enough right? A closer look at the campaign posters gives more information such as the explanation that two are running for the 2nd Judicial District seat in Division A while the other pair are running for the seat in Division B.
Divisions? What divisions? Isn’t there just one judge for the district? Why are there two divisions for the same district? Actually there are three but only two seats are up for grabs in this election. Maybe a little explanation will help shed some light for those who are confused.
The 2nd Judicial District is comprised of three parishes: Jackson, Bienville and Claiborne. Each hold their own court that tries cases of that parish and are listed as a separate division of the district but the entire district votes for the judge of their choice in each division and a candidate can run for a seat in the division of their choice even though they may not live in that parish.
A perfect example is the race for Judge in Division A (Claiborne Parish). Neither, Darrell Avery or Walter May resides in Claiborne Parish but both filed to run for the seat that is being vacated by retiring Judge Jenifer Clason. They are the only two candidates running in Division A.
The Division B race is between Jackson Parish residents Yumeaka Robinson Washington and Rick Warren who are attempting to gain the seat that is now open due to the retirement of Judge Jimmie Teat. Division C, which is the Bienville Parish court, has Glen Fallin as the elected Judge and is not up for grabs in the upcoming election.
Hopefully this will help clear up the district judge race about who is running for what position and where. The most important thing is to make your voice heard and cast a vote on November 3rd if you have not already done so in the early election phase.
Early voting information: The early voting period ended on Tuesday, October 27th with a record number of ballots cast before Election Day. Across the state nearly 800,000 people have already voted which destroys the previous record of 556,000 that was listed for the 2016 election.
According to information provided by the Louisiana Secretary of State the difference was two-fold. First was the acceptance of mail in ballot votes and the second was the difference in Democrats that have cast their early vote in the state compared to 2016.
Another record broken was the number of those registered. Of the roughly three million potential voters in Louisiana a little over 2.2 million residents have registered to vote. This represents almost 72% of the population.