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*** UPDATED x1 *** Anybody have any ideas how to fix this problem?

Friday, Feb 23, 2018

* This system has to be changed

Folks who tried to cast Democratic ballots Thursday at the city’s sole early-voting location were turned away if they lived in the Southwest Side 7th County Board district, which covers about one-tenth of Chicago.

That’s because a Circuit Court judge restored Raul Montes Jr. to the 7th District ballot for now. Election officials knocked him off, but an appeal continues.

Chicago Board of Elections officials said they were reprogramming the touch screens being used at 16 W. Adams St. so they’d be ready to go again Friday morning.

I mean, Cook County already has an assessor candidate on the ballot who was kicked off and now this.

*** UPDATE *** Sarah Brune of the Illinois Campaign for Political Reform in comments…

Hi Rich,

Here is some background research ICPR did on this topic: https://mailchi.mp/ilcampaign/illinois-must-make-changes-to-protect-early-voting.

There are a few options as we see it (RNUG outlines them well):

    - Move up the candidate filing deadline to early November so that there is more time for petition challenges to play out

    - Shorten the initial 30-day judicial review for petition challenges (this would help, but not completely solve the problem)

    - Determine a statewide protocol for proceeding with ballot certification when challenges are ongoing. This is something that can be discussed among election officials, but there should be just one way of handling it. Right now, some jurisdictions proceed with voting, but let voters know that their choices may not count if the ballot changes, while others turn voters away and ask them to vote later. In other jurisdictions, voters will be asked to come re-cast ballots if changes are made.

The calendar right now is set up to fail, and needs to be changed to accommodate early voting and longer petition challenges. Otherwise, this will continue to happen for every Primary and Consolidated Election in the future.

- Posted by Rich Miller        

21 Comments
  1. - RNUG - Friday, Feb 23, 18 @ 10:37 am:

    Two possible approaches, just for primaries:

    1) leave everyone who filed on the ballot

    2) for progressive voting where you identify your 1st, 2nd and 3rd choices

    3) invalidate any votes for candidates the courts disqualify by election day.

    OR

    1) make the filing date earlier

    2) further limit the challenge period

    3) have a hard cut-off date for printing ballots / early voting start … and any unresolved challenges default in favor of the candidate being valid


  2. - The Captain - Friday, Feb 23, 18 @ 10:39 am:

    You have at least two options and they are not mutually exclusive. 1) allow for a method of ballot access other than the petition system. Some other states have a fee, others have party conventions, there are options. 2) stretch out the calendar a little more, it’s too compressed. It takes time to file petition challenges, evaluate them, have a hearing officer rule on them, have the full board rule on the hearing officer’s recommendations and then allow for appeals through the circuit court and potentially the appellate court.


  3. - Stuart Shiffman - Friday, Feb 23, 18 @ 10:40 am:

    While this might not solve the specific problem, we really need to compress our election seasons. We are having a primary in March for an election in November. And when that election in over won’t mayoral campaigns start? And then 2020 campaigns. Perpetual campaigns put stress on those who run our elections.


  4. - Oswego Willy - Friday, Feb 23, 18 @ 10:43 am:

    This is a “removing” of candidate(s)

    I was always of the belief at the precinct level of voting and polling place(s), the election judges are tasked to remove off their ballots the choices still on printed ballots.

    With both party judges involved in the process, and signing docs as you do as judges, under threat of facing criminal charges, these “approved” names are REmoved at that level.

    It’s far from perfect, it has inherent pitfalls a-plenty, but it does allow more time and it empowers the polling places and judges to act as a court order asks.

    Yikes, I’m gonna get slammed.


  5. - JB13 - Friday, Feb 23, 18 @ 10:46 am:

    Either reduce the ability of party hacks to challenge nominating petitions over silly infractions,like paperclipped pages, or pull back on early voting. If your vote is important to you, certainly you can find a few minutes within a week of an election to cast a ballot?


  6. - 47th Ward - Friday, Feb 23, 18 @ 10:47 am:

    Let the Madigan-Berrios Machine pick the candidates. Duh.


  7. - hisgirlfriday - Friday, Feb 23, 18 @ 10:55 am:

    Move back from the early voting period all the filing and petition challenge deadlines and create an expedited court appeals process for ballot challenges.

    Done.


  8. - Sarah Brune, Illinois Campaign for Political Reform - Friday, Feb 23, 18 @ 11:01 am:

    Hi Rich,

    Here is some background research ICPR did on this topic: https://mailchi.mp/ilcampaign/illinois-must-make-changes-to-protect-early-voting?e=f61221038c.

    There are a few options as we see it (RNUG outlines them well):

    - Move up the candidate filing deadline to early November so that there is more time for petition challenges to play out

    - Shorten the initial 30-day judicial review for petition challenges (this would help, but not completely solve the problem)

    - Determine a statewide protocol for proceeding with ballot certification when challenges are ongoing. This is something that can be discussed among election officials, but there should be just one way of handling it. Right now, some jurisdictions proceed with voting, but let voters know that their choices may not count if the ballot changes, while others turn voters away and ask them to vote later. In other jurisdictions, voters will be asked to come re-cast ballots if changes are made.

    The calendar right now is set up to fail, and needs to be changed to accommodate early voting and longer petition challenges. Otherwise, this will continue to happen for every Primary and Consolidated Election in the future.


  9. - titan - Friday, Feb 23, 18 @ 11:04 am:

    Several options - most not likely to occur.

    1. scrap the petition process for ballot access (not likely, it is, for example, somewhat hardwired into the constitutional provisions for nominating judicial candidates).
    2. make the petition filing period earlier.
    3. make the early voting period start later.
    4. move the primary to a later date.


  10. - John Messinger - Friday, Feb 23, 18 @ 11:07 am:

    Shorten the length of time for early voting. Do we really need 45 days of voting?


  11. - Unreal! - Friday, Feb 23, 18 @ 11:09 am:

    How does this stuff keep happening?

    The petition circulating time frame was moved back to accommodate more electoral board challenges. The time for seeking judicial review of an electoral board decision was reduced by half. Both the Chicago Board of Elections and the Cook County Clerk now use hearing officers to expedite cases.
    Still the election challenges cannot be processed in a timely manner.


  12. - TinyDancer(FKASue) - Friday, Feb 23, 18 @ 11:34 am:

    Limit appeals.
    Paper ballots.
    Reprint them.


  13. - Politix - Friday, Feb 23, 18 @ 11:48 am:

    Why not start the process sooner? Give it six months, rather than 3, for the petition process to play out.

    Raila 100% should NOT be on the ballot. The evidence clearly indicated her team failed to follow proper procedure in collecting and notarizing signatures. Her campaign even admitted to making mistakes. Her appeal was nothing more than a desperate attempt to get on the ballot and it worked, showing a total lack of integrity and undermining the democratic process.


  14. - Austinman - Friday, Feb 23, 18 @ 12:09 pm:

    Why do we have a petition process anyway? Other states people pay a fee and they are on the ballot.


  15. - Unreal! - Friday, Feb 23, 18 @ 12:10 pm:

    @Politix:

    Completely agree with your comments. Raila does not belong on the ballot.

    I read the electoral decision in Raila’s case and her triumphal press release (which is really filled with misleading statements — she has not won any vindication in court).

    Given her sloppy petition work and actual fraudulent notarizations, it is highly doubtful that the electoral board decision is going to be reversed on judicial review. The court allowed her name to be printed solely due to the inability to hold up all of the ballots while the case is dragging on.


  16. - ArchPundit - Friday, Feb 23, 18 @ 1:03 pm:

    —- move the primary to a later date.

    This only got one mention when it is the obvious one. It’s telling how Illinois has gotten locked into this absurdly early primary. It benefits incumbents and helps to entrench them. Probably could help reduce the number of Nazis on the ballot alone.

    ===Why do we have a petition process anyway?

    It’s the number of petitions that are ridiculous. As you mention you could have people pay a fee or other process and I’d be fine with those, but just making the petition process less onerous would be a great way to go too.


  17. - ArchPundit - Friday, Feb 23, 18 @ 1:39 pm:

    —move the primary to a later date

    I’m always surprised by how wedded people are to the early primary. I get why Madigan and people like Lipinski like it–it keeps challengers out of races, but it’s crazy to have it in March.


  18. - Lt Guv - Friday, Feb 23, 18 @ 3:01 pm:

    Sarah’s ideas make sense.


  19. - @misterjayem - Friday, Feb 23, 18 @ 3:29 pm:

    Q: Why does Illinois _______ with regard to election law?

    A: To protect incumbents.

    – MrJM


  20. - gdubya - Friday, Feb 23, 18 @ 4:02 pm:

    Very minimal signature requirement, and a fee. Most candidates will make it to the ballot and not a lot of wasted time and expense deciding who is on or off. Instead of spending a lot of resources on this portion of the election process you can actually make raise some funds for the huge expense of the voting process.


  21. - DuPage Saint - Friday, Feb 23, 18 @ 4:38 pm:

    I think a fee is an excellent idea. I can see it now: Incumbent s seeking re election $50. 00. Challengers $5,000.00


Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.


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