Republican Candidates for McHenry Township Clerk & Trustee Kicked Off the Ballot

In what reminded me of the wrestling tag team matches I used the watch as a kid, two McHenry Township Electoral Boards voted to remove the GOP caucus-nominated Republican Party candidates for Township Clerk and Trustee from the April 4th election ballot.

McHenry Township Clerk Marsha Nelson announces her vote to remove the four Republican Township Trustee Candidates from the April 4th ballot.  Public member Steve Haugh (center) voted to give the GOP ballot access.  Public member David Stone (left) agreed with Nelson, who is running as an Independent for election to post to which she was appointed as a Republican.

Remnants of former McHenry County Republican Party Chairman Al Jourdan’s organization cast deciding votes to keep Republicans out of the election where they would be running against fellow Independent slate members.  (Jourdan signed at least one Independent’s petition.)

Jourdan’s allies lost control of both the McHenry County Republican Central Committee and the McHenry Township Central Committee after the 2014 GOP Primary Election.

Meanwhile, many McHenry Township officials elected in 2013 retired and were replaced by people claiming to be Republicans. It is a requirement of state law such appointed replacements be from the same party as the people whose offices they are assuming.  All McHenry Township officials elected in 2013, except the Assessor, were Republicans.

The new folks in charge of the McHenry Township GOP decided they wanted to take control of McHenry Township government, as well as the party.

Craig Adams

Marsha Nelson

At a Township GOP Central Committee meeting, Township Clerk Marsha Nelson and Township Supervisor Craig Adams incorrectly advised the attending Precinct Committeemen that of the two options for selecting party candidates

  • a caucus or
  • a primary election

the primary was what would occur unless the GOP Central Committee decided on a caucus.

The Township GOP missed the deadline for notifying the County Clerk that a primary would be held, so a caucus, the only way to select candidates prior to a 1973 law that State Senator Jack Schaffer and I sponsored to allow primaries, was left as the only option or there would be no Republicans on the ballot.

David Gervais and Jeff Thorsen, both from Crystal Lake, counted votes at the McHenry Township Republican Caucus.

A caucus was held in which the Township GOP preferred candidates were nominated with precinct committeemen being given the number of Republican votes cast in their precincts in last spring’s Primary Election, minus the vote of anyone from their precinct who attended the caucus.

This weighted vote arrangement was decided in a four-hour Central Committee meeting in which appointed Township Supervisor and Precinct Committeeman Craig Adams participated, but opposed the weighted vote arrangement.

After the incumbents figured out the unlikelihood of their being nominated at the caucus, Independent petitions were immediately circulated for all the offices but Assessor, where incumbent Mary Mahady, a Democrat, is the only candidate.

The two members of the Independent team who were elected Republican Precinct Committeemen, Craig Adams and Sue Draffkorn, resigned those positions, but only after they had already begun circulating petitions for their Independent candidacies.

At Friday’s McHenry Township Electoral Board meetings, members of the now-“Independent” slate of current Republican Township Officials cast deciding votes on spearate McHenry Township Electoral Boards to knock Caucus-slated Republican candidates for Township Trustee and Clerk off the ballot.

Craig Adams makes his case for ballot removal for GOP Township Clerk candideate Dan Alyward before Indpendent running makes Township Trustee Gary Barla and Neal Shepler with public member David Stone sitting in middle.  Township Attorney James Militello sits the far left.

Although running together, different members of the Indpendent slate were on the two Electoral Boards that disqualified the Republican Party candidates from being on the ballot.

In each case, even though on the same team, the person(s) casting the deciding vote was not on the ballot against the person or people they kicked off the ballot., even though they circulated petitions for them.

Stan Wojewski

Bill Cunningham

That was according to state law, which allows Electoral Board participation if members are not on the ballot running against the person whose candidacy is being judged.

By approving complaints filed by McHenry Township Supervisor Craig Adams, Republican Township Trustee candidates

Bob Anderson

  • Mike Rakestraw
  • Bill Cunningham
  • Bob Anderson
  • Stan Wojewski

were removed from the April 4th Consolidated Election Ballot.

Public member David Stone voted with cuttent Township Clerk Marsha Nelson, who is a member of the slate running as Independents, to deny ballot access to the four Republican Trustee candidates, while public member Steve Haugh dissented.

In addition, GOP Clerk candidate Dan Alyward met the same fate.

Dan Alyward

Two arguments were made by Adams:

  1. State law was violated because the Chairman of the Caucus was not a McHenry Township resident.
  2. The State Constitution was violated because each Caucus participant was not allowed to cast one vote.

These arguments were accepted in a 3-0 vote by the Electoral Board composed of Township Turstees Gary Barla and Neal Shepler, plus attorney David Stone, appointed by Chief Judge Michael Sullivan.

The McHenry Township Electoral Board that voted to take Republican Township Clerk candidate Dan Alyward (seated in witness chair in front) off the ballot.  Current Township Trustees Gary Barla and Neal Shepler, runing as Independents with current Township Clerk Marsha Nelson, both voted to remove the Republican candidate.  Public Board member David Stone concurred.

The arguments were the same in the Adams complaint against GOP Clerk candidate Dan Aylward.

In this case, all three Electoral Board members voted against allowing Aylward on the ballot.

Besides attorney Stone, the other two Board members were incumbent Township Trustees Gary Barla and Neal Schepler, both of whom are running for Trustee in April as Independents on the same slate as Marsha Nelson, who is a candidate for Township Clerk.

= = = =
More coming.


Republican Candidates for McHenry Township Clerk & Trustee Kicked Off the Ballot — 12 Comments

  1. Sickening!

    How could slate-members honestly hear a complaint by their boss hog Adams?

    Is this America?

    Dave Stone is a Democrat!

    He was a neighbor of a now deceased friend of mine from McHenry.

    Let’s just say the next door neighbor didn’t have anything good to say about Stone, but that didn’t keep him from speaking about him.

  2. Wow, I guess DC and Springfield don’t stand alone in disingenuous actions.

    More coming?


  3. A caucus is supposed to be open to all Republicans so they can have an equal vote on choosing Republican candidates.

    The fact that these…”people” in charge engineered a stacked “weighted vote” that elevated Republican Committeemen, and effectively shut out and disenfranchised the average Republican voter?

    In my opinion, it’s a testament to just how slimey Illinois politics can get, even in the hands of so-called self-proclaimed “reformers” like Bob Anderson and the rest of these “Republican” candidates…

  4. (b) The rules of procedure shall include the following:

    (1) No caucus shall commence earlier than 6:00 p.m.

    (2) The caucus shall commence at the place specified
    in the notice of caucus.

    (3) Procedures by which qualified caucus participants
    determine by a majority vote the duties of caucus judges of election. Caucus judges of election shall be appointed by a majority vote of the township or multi-township central committee. No judge of the Supreme Court, appellate court, or circuit court or associate judge shall serve as a caucus judge of election.

    (4) Nominations for selection as a candidate shall be
    accepted from any qualified participant of the caucus.

    (5) The method of voting (i.e., written ballot, voice
    vote, show of hands, standing vote) for determining the candidate or candidates selected for nomination.

    So the way I read this is that if a show of hands or voice vote is allowed it can be determined that you only get one vote.

    This is what Mr. Stone ruled was the basis of his decision.

    The republican just dont like to follow the rules when it applies to themselves.

  5. A party caucus is open to all members of the party.

    A Republican caucus, in other words, is open to all Republican electors (voters).

    Giving Precinct Committeemen a ‘weighted vote’ advantage sets them far above the average Republican who shows up, and is typical of the dirty politics that Illinois is famous for.

    So congratulations to you McHenry Township Republicans for making us all look more corrupt than a Saturday Night Live sketch…

  6. And if you happen to be a McHenry TOwnship GOP Committeeman and you’re comfortable with corrupt, unethical practices that exclude the average Republican voter from participating in his or her party’s caucus, please remind us never to vote for you or anyone you’re associated with.

    A fish rots from the head down.

    Do you have an affiliation with McHenry Township GOP “leadership”?

    If so, did you object to this corrupt, insider deal to exclude the average Republican voter from meaningful participation in the GOP caucus?

    Because if the answer to my questions is “No,” then YOU are exactly what’s wrong with this state…

  7. Reminder: The caucus is meant to be open to all “Republican electors” in the township, which in Illinois means all voters who pulled a Republican ballot during the last Primary election.

    When the insiders and the boys in the smoke-filled rooms want to rig a caucus, they do things like establishing “rules” gifting Committeemen with “weighted ballots” that blow the individual Republican voter out of the water.

    You know, the kind of insider grifting that “reformers” like Bob Anderson screamed against for years, UNTIL the day that it started benefitting THEM…

  8. Robert Williams: you are a township shill. C’mon just admit it.

    I cant wait until townships are abolished statewide, as they were in my home township, Morgan Co. … although the state may be bankrupted first.

    ax assessments often are made by untrained township assessors who set their own policies, make their own rules and treat taxpayers unequally and inequitably.

    While townships maintain residential roads only in unincorporated areas, they tax all township property even if it’s within an overlapping municipality, in which case the property owner ends up paying to maintain unincorporated roads along with his or her own city’s or village’s.

    And in providing aid to the needy, township supervisors arbitrarily can set their own eligibility criteria and benefit levels, doling out taxpayer money for food, rent and other assistance as they alone deem fair.

    Just as troubling, townships often maintain bloated bureaucracies, favor patronage payrollers and hoard cash that rightfully should be rebated to taxpayers.

  9. Josey Wales is a shill, too.

    BC the state law allows parties to set any other rules they deem necessary for their caucuses.

    You ‘forgot’ about that one!

  10. Rickey: Admit it, you are a big government Liberal shill who wants to eliminate the taxpayer’s and voter’s impact on governing our local communities.

    I own an IT firm, and my impression of the McHenry County Assessor is that he couldn’t care less about taxpayer concerns.

    Why should he?

    He’s an APPOINTED political crony who is untouchable by the voters.

    In contrast, I have ALWAYS been able to reach a reasonable agreement with my TOWNSHIP ASSESSOR on the market value and tax assessment of my properties.


    Maybe because he’s required to live in our community, AND face election by the voters every four years?

    Can you do the math on that one, Ricky..?

  11. And Ricky: Thank you for confirming my statement that the McHenry Township GOP chose to make their Committeemen into “Super-Delegates” whose voting power far outweighed any individual Republican voter at the caucus.

    Hillary Clinton would be proud…

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.