Phillip Robinson, appointed Davidson County Circuit Court judge two weeks ago, rolled to victory in the Democratic primary for that position Tuesday, beating attorney Stan Kweller by a near 3-to-1 spread.
Robinson, a longtime family law attorney, beat Kweller for the Division 3 circuit court Democratic nomination Tuesday, 11,011 votes to 3,837 votes (74 percent to 26 percent).
The election is for the seat formerly held by Judge Barbara Haynes, who retired in the fall. Gov. Bill Haslam appointed Robinson to the judgeship on Feb. 23. Robinson could face an independent challenger in the general election in August, but he would be the heavy favorite to win.
This particular circuit court division is likely to be designated to hear cases involving divorce, child custody and other domestic issues. Judge Carol Soloman had presided over family law matters, but she recently ceased doing so following scrutiny of her court.
“I don’t have a learning curve,” Robinson recently told The City Paper. “I can sit right on that bench tomorrow and start dealing with those cases.”
Robinson was not available for comment following his victory on Tuesday.
Though Robinson, who boasts 26 years of family law experiences, is a political newcomer, running for office runs in his family.
Robinson’s father, Robb Robinson served as a Democratic state representative. His uncle, Garner Robinson, served as a Davidson County sheriff. Gale Robinson, a cousin, is a General Sessions judge. And cousin Muriel Robinson was a circuit court judge.