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Franklin attorneys say judicial candidates qualified

May 05, 2009

CHAMBERSBURG, Pa. -- A majority of members of the Franklin County Bar Association (FCBA) who participated in a poll last month consider all four candidates for the Court of Common Pleas of the 39th Judicial District to be qualified to serve as judge.

The bar association polled its members by anonymous ballot in April. Nearly 65 percent of the 132 eligible bar members responded to the poll. Of those, a majority said they believe candidates Angela Krom, Shawn Meyers, Eric Weisbrod and Timothy Wilmot are qualified to serve on the bench.

Bar members had the opportunity to rate the candidates as highly qualified, qualified or not currently qualified, or to offer no opinion if they did not feel they know a candidate well enough to make an informed judgment.

They were asked to consider such criteria as integrity, legal ability, diligence and judicial temperament when evaluating the candidates.

"The poll reflects the opinions of the responding members regarding the four candidates' qualifications," FCBA President J. McDowell "Jack" Sharpe said. "The bar association, as an organization, does not take a position on candidates in a judicial election."

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Two seats are open on the Court of Common Pleas of the 39th Judicial District, which covers Franklin and Fulton counties. The primary election is May 19.

A brochure called "A Citizen's Guide: The Judicial Branch," which explains the roles and duties of the various levels in Pennsylvania's court system, is available for download on the FCBA Web site at www.franklinbar.org.

Voters seeking to educate themselves on candidates for statewide judicial election can turn to PAVoteSmart, a nonpartisan, informational Web site developed by the Pennsylvania Bar Association. The address is www.pavotesmart.com.

The Franklin County Bar Association is the professional membership organization for attorneys licensed in Pennsylvania and practicing in Franklin County.

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