Goodman, Reynolds advance in Fayette Circuit Court judge race

Judge John E. Reynolds and Judge Julie Muth Goodman
Judge John E. Reynolds and Judge Julie Muth Goodman

Two candidates with experience on the bench received the most votes in Tuesday’s primary for an open Fayette Circuit Court judicial seat.

Fayette District Court Judge Julie Muth Goodman was the top vote-getter in the field of five candidates receiving 55 percent of the vote, according to State Board of Elections unofficial results. Incumbent Fayette Circuit Court Judge John Reynolds was second with 21 percent.

Goodman and Reynolds will advance to the Nov. 5 general election to serve the remaining term — until 2022 — of former Circuit Court Judge Pamela Goodwine, who was elected in November to the state court of appeals. Goodman also raised the most money with more than $77,845, according to the 15-day reports filed with Kentucky Registry of Election Finance. Reynolds raised $21,396.73.

Gov. Matt Bevin appointed Reynolds to the seat in March.

That was the second time Bevin appointed Reynolds to an open Fayette Circuit Court seat. Bevin first appointed Reynolds to fill the term of retiring Circuit Court Judge James Ishmael Jr. Reynolds ran for the position but was defeated in November by Lucy VanMeter.

Reynolds stressed his experience on the bench and expertise with criminal and civil law during the campaign. Reynolds also distanced himself from Bevin, who is not popular in the liberal-leaning Fayette County. Reynolds said he had not met Bevin until after he was appointed to the bench in 2018.

Goodman, who has served as a district court judge for more than a decade, practiced both criminal and civil law before being elected to the district court in 2008. Goodman said her experience in district court made her the best candidate for the job.

Thomas “Tommy” Todd, who has practiced law for 33 years, came in third with 11 percent, according to unofficial results. Todd S. Page, a lawyer with Stoll Keenon Ogden, was fourth with 7 percent. Steven Stadler, a prosecutor with the Fayette County Attorney’s Office, finished fifth with 6 percent.

Fayette Circuit Court

Two proceed to a runoff

  • Julie Muth Goodman 28,430
  • Todd Page 3,377
  • John Reynolds 10,876
  • Steven Stadler 3,681
  • Thomas Todd 5,596