Monday, December 18, 2017

Judicial candidate challenges begin December 20

In a short meeting this morning, the Cook County Electoral board ratified the assignment of all 56 judicial candidate objections to 19 different hearing officers, with hearings on these cases to begin Wednesday morning, December 20. The complete schedule can be found at this link on the County Clerk's website. No one hearing officer has more than four judicial candidate objections to resolve; several have only two or three.

Hearing officers are the fact-finders for the Cook County Electoral Board; they serve as the Board's duly authorized 'eyes and ears.' Nevertheless, although the electoral board will typically adopt the findings and recommendations of its hearing officers, the recommendation of the hearing officer in any given case is not binding on the electoral board, which must vote to accept or reject the hearing officer's recommendations.

The big news emerging from the Electoral Board this morning, however, was the Motion to Disqualify Cook County Clerk David Orr and his designee, attorney Daniel P. Madden, from the board in the matter of Claudia Cardona & Raul Perez v. Frederick "Fritz" Kaegi, 2017-COEB-CC-06. Kaegi has filed to run for Cook County Assessor, a position currently held by Joseph C. Berrios, who also serves as 31st Ward Committeeman and Chairman of the Cook County Democratic Party. Mr. Orr, who is not running for reelection as Cook County Clerk, has not been shy about his prefrence for Kaegi over Berrios. And the objectors to Kaegi's nominating petitions, Cardona and Perez, contend in the motion filed today that Orr and his designee have a bias and prejudice in Kaegi's favor and are therefore incapable of fairly addressing their challenge to Kaegi's petitions.

Representing Cardona and Perez are election law powerhouses Burton S. Odelson (of Odelson & Sterk, Ltd.), Thomas A. Jaconetty, James P. Nally, and Scott B. Erdman.

The Electoral Board voted to assign this motion for hearing to the hearing officer assigned to the challenge to Kaegi's petitions. The motion, then, will be re-presented tomorrow morning before Hearing Officer Barbara Goodman. Even though this motion does not directly impact any of the judicial candidate challenges, I hope to provide more on this story tomorrow and as necessary thereafter.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

And we have our first ballot objection challenge fatality of 2018: Ubi O'Neal has been removed from the Camille Willis vacancy.