Circulators of the petition to change the way the Illinois General Assembly is apportioned are complaining that they are not getting a fair deal from the Illinois State Board of Elections.
The Chicago Tribune editorial yesterday points to radically desperate results when signature samples were examined by Board employees.
It wasn’t the same procedure, but those familiar with the percentage of legitimate signatures gathered in various parts of the state told me that those circulated in Chicago were lucky to have 50% pass muster.
Petitions from the suburbs and Downstate were much more likely to be legitimate.
So, the finding that one examiner found 17% legit, while another certified 87% is not in and of itself troubling.
46% of the signatures were found to be acceptable.
Because the circulating group, Yes for Independence, did not get well over twice as many signatures as needed is the problem.
The group had lots of money, but not lots of political smarts.
Locally members of the McHenry County League of Women Voters were observed gathering signatures.
The last time a constitutional amendment was put forth Republican Precinct Committeemen were requested to pass petitions. Not enough signatures were gathered, but GOP Committeemen were apparently not asked to assist in the petitioning effort.
Was that because the organizers thought involving Republicans would “dirty” their campaign for good government?
Beats me, but it was certainly a misstep that, if not taken, might have resulted in enough additional signatures that the Tribune would not have felt compelled to write an editorial entitled,
The State Board of Elections appears hellbent on disenfranchising disgusted Illinois citizens