The petition filing of appointed McHenry Township Supervisor Craig Adams have been challenged by Republican Supervisor candidate Steven Robert Verr.
Verr writes that he is filing the challenge
“because of his sincere, abiding and straightforward desire of seeing to it that the laws and customs governing elecitons and the filing of candidacy petitions are properly complied with and that the integrity of established political parties, their autonomy and their necessary identities, structures and functions are preseerved because the very political order rests upon them and that voter confusion be eliminated.”
Verr first challenges Adams’ abandonment of his Republican Party background, which includes
- his election and service as a Republican Precinct Committeeman “for at least the past twenty years”
- his election in the last McHenry Township election four years ago to the position of Township Trustee on the Republican Party ticket
- his appointment as Township Supervisor to fill out the term of the woman elected as a Republican on the same ticket, noting that “since the resigning Supervisor was elected as a Republican Party partisan, her successor must also be a Republican Party partisan throught his incumbency, unless he specifically and positively resigns from the Republican Party”
- re-election as Republican Precinct Committeeman on March 15, 2016, as well as voting in that GOP Primary Election
- taking part in a McHenry Township Republican Central Committee meeting on October 25, 2016, “in his official capacity as a Republican Committeeman,” including addressing the meeting
- participating actively in a Republican Central Committee meeting on November 23, 2016, to formulate the rules of the Republcan Party Caucus
- asking people on November 29, 2016, at a Johnsburg bar known as “Halftimes” to sign his “independent candidate petition” for McHenry Township Supervisor when “Republican campaign paraphernalis, including the GOP elephant logo was prominently displayed”
- allowing people to sign those petitions while they were unattended at “the aforementioned saloon” (pages 12, 13, 15 and 16 are requested to be invalidated for said reason)
- resigning by notarized letter (“restricted delivery/return receipt requested) as elected Republican Precinct Committeeman on December 13, 2016, “the earliest receipt of which was about 5 PM on December 16, 2016”
- filing in candidacy papers as an “Independent Candidate” for “Township Supervisor–the very position he had, and continues to hold as a Republican Party member (emphasis in the original) by virtue of his ascension as a partisan Republican when he filled the Supervisor vacancy”
Verr argues Adams was “circulating ‘Independent’ candidacy petitions at the very same time Candidate was a sitting, partisan Republican Precinct Committeeman. In fact, he never even resigned from the Republican Party, he merely resigned as a Republican Committeeman.
Verr notes that ten petition pages were notarized before Adams signed his Precinct Committee resignation letter and fifteen other pages where notarized before the resignation letter was received by a McHenry GOP official.
Verr again points out that Adams was not eligible to hold the appointed office of Township Supervisor unless he continued to be a member of the Republican Party.
“Government officials elevated as successors due to Party affiliation as well as elected partisan Party officials are not like ordinary voters who can flit back and forth like butterflies between parties.
“When a person voluntarily stands for, and is elected a partisan official of a recognized and established party–there are certain responsibilities that attach, which the official voluntarily assumes.
“Likewise, when a peson ascends to an official government post because of his self-chosen party affiliation, as Candidate did here when he was appointed Supervisor, he cannot simultaneously run as an Independent or as the partisan of another unrecognized party.”
Verr characterizes Adams as a Dr.Jekyll/Mr.Hyde split political personality and such a hybrid runs completely counter to the entire concept of party organization, structure, function, identity and purpose.”
Continuing, Verr states, “…if political parties are to mean and stand for something” the party cannot have “chimerical creatures like the Candidate”…posing as a Republican and reaping the benefits of that affiliation for a government job and even serving as an elected Republican Precinct Committeeman, “while running as some sort of free-actor, non-Republican ‘Independent” against the Republilcan nominee,”which Verr labels as a “mutant political actor.”
Allowing Adams on the ballot “cannot help but to cause voter confusion and diminishment and dilution, if not destruction, of party structures, functions, identities, norms, established customs, aims and purposes…
“Candidate cannot simultaneously wear to separate hats…before he embarked on a hostile and antagonistic and politically ill-starred ‘Independent’ voyage.”
Verr also notes “the vexing and confusing statues of” Adams being “further compounded by the fact that from September through November, 2016, Candidate, directly and/or through surrogates, was collecting signatures on his Candidate Petitions to place his name as a Candidate for the Republican Party nomination for the Township Supervisor post, thus passing partisan Republican petitions and ‘Independent’ petitions during the same election cycle for the very same position, adding to the confusion.”
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There are two other counts in the complaint.