Shelby Co. (ECWd) –
Petition Objections filed, Electoral Board established, now the education begins. To grasp this entire Electoral Board process, we highly encourage you to read Part 1 and Part II before reading this article.
We outlined that Part III to this story will be tied to one of those obligations an Electoral Board has when presiding over an election petition hearing. Were the certificate of nomination or nomination papers filed under the conditions required by law?
As the filing of documents by the Caucus Leader, Brad Halbrook, the objector claimed the form was filled out wrong and not filled out completely. Looking at the form let’s first address if the document was filled out “wrong”. The answer is no, however, the objector may have perceived them to be “wrong” because the options of “City”, “Village”, or “Township” are not circled. That deficiency does not constitute a fatal error, especially when the document on its face is addressed to the Shelbyville Township. We are confident that no court would validate such an objection.
The only other item we found is that the address provided by the candidates do not, in some cases, provide the state and in all cases the zip code, which is both part of their address. Those minor errors are not fatal errors nor is there language in the statutes that instruct such a failure would invalidate those candidates from appearing on the ballot.
The second part of the objectors claim is that the form was not filled out completely. As you can see by looking at the document below, the lower section is not filled out. However, that section is to be filled out by the Clerk of the Election Authority, which in this case is the Township Clerk.
60 ILCS 1/45-20(b) ……”The nomination papers shall be filed in the office of the township clerk” – “Complied with”
60 ILCS 1/45-20 (c) “The township clerk shall certify the candidates so nominated to the proper election authorities not less than 68 days before the township election. The election shall be conducted in accordance with the general election law. ” “NOT COMPLIED WITH”
According to Brad Halbrook, when he filed the caucus papers with the Township, the Clerk was on vacation and not available. The lower portion of that document is to be filled out by the Clerk, as they are the ones authorized sign it and administer oaths. It would appear the Clerk has failed to fill out the form, not Halbrook.
With all this in mind, we come back to the powers of an Electoral Board. As it relates to this article, the focus is on “were the certificate of nomination or nomination papers filed under the conditions required by law”? We believe the clear answer is yes.
It should be noted that the objection is about how the document is filled out. It makes no reference as to whether the document was “filed” under the conditions required by law.
Based on this information, we once again suggest the objector withdraw his objections as they are not compliant with the mandated law, as outlined in this article, and fail to identify an improper filing with the election authority. It should be noted that amendments to objections cannot be submitted after the deadline to file objections.
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