When Voting, Don’t Stop at the Top

From Illinois Family Action:

A 2022 Get-Out-the-Vote Message: Don’t Stop at the Top!

Written by John Lopez

The 2022 General Election campaign is reaching the home stretch, and the start of expanded in-person early voting and local get-out-the-vote (GOTV) efforts are underway to ensure that all voters turn out to cast their ballots. In their GOTV messaging, everyone from the honorable precinct committeepersons on up should remind voters, “Don’t Stop at the Top!”

In the 2020 elections, Kane County saw four of its countywide offices flipped from Republican to Democrat control, including the open offices of county board chairman (elected at-large by popular vote) and state’s attorney.

In 2020, six-term County Treasurer David Rickert (R-Elgin) was running to succeed outgoing County Board Chairman Chris Lauzen (R-Aurora). Corinne Pierog (D-Batavia), who had previously lost two state senate races to Jim Oberweis (R- Sugar Grove), was running.

Three days after the November 3rd election, Republican candidate Dave Rickert conceded the race. With Rickert’s concession, the Democrats flipped the county board chairmanship. Pierog became the first Democrat leader of the Kane County board in modern times.

Here were the unofficial returns when Rickert conceded the race:

Corrine Pierog114,19250.4%
David Rickert112,21649.6%

Source: Kane County Clerk website unofficial returns

Rickert’s deficit in votes at the time of his concession was 1,879 votes. Per the above, Pierog’s lead grew to nearly 1,000 votes when vote-by-mail ballots were added. But the number of voters who did not cast a ballot for either Pierog or Rickert was four times higher than the margin of victory. 

Clearly, both parties needed to do a “Don’t Stop at the Top” campaign in all down-ballot races, especially local races where voters hadn’t been bombarded with TV commercials during the prior months.

Kane County Republicans have asked what happened as Pierog assumed leadership of the Kane County Board as the chairman, Theresa Barreiro (D-Aurora) took over the circuit court clerk office, Penny Wegman (D-Elgin) took over office of auditor, and Jamie Mosser (D-St. Charles) took over the state attorney’s office.

Was it purely coincidental that all the Democrat nominees were women and all the Republicans were men? One thing has been confirmed, Democrats in Kane County targeted women voters in their GOTV effort in 2020.

Also, Democrats flipped one county board seat of the 24-member board elected from single-member districts, so Pierog assumed leadership of the board with a 13-11 board majority.

Whatever happened in Kane County, it affected the 14th congressional district race sufficiently to cause Congresswoman Lauren Underwood (D-Naperville) to win Kane County, the 2nd largest county in the 14th district.

Underwood’s defeat of Oberweis was quite a feat in that Kane County is not only his home but also the county in which his dairy business is located. 

In a national election as critical as 2022’s, all political leaders and candidates should emphasize to voters the importance of not stopping at the top. 

In 2022, GOTV efforts must strongly urge voters to move beyond Amendment 1, U.S. Senate and Illinois governor. GOTV efforts must urge voters to continue through the Illinois Supreme Court (Districts 2 & 3) race and judicial retention.

John Lopez wrote about policy and elections through the McHenry County Blog from 2019 to 2021. He is now semi-retired and does freelance analytics work. 

Follow John on Twitter: @MarcVAvelar


When Voting, Don’t Stop at the Top — 6 Comments

  1. LOL. The machines and systems had nothing to do with Underwoods win. What a joke.

    Konnech Inc

    And IL Board of Elections had nothing to do with it. Wake the F up IL idiots. CCP is involved in US Elections all the way up to DC. Keep your heads in the sand.

  2. You’re saying that under Trump’s watch elections were stolen in 2018 and 2020.

    So the only two elections that happened when Trump was president were stolen by his enemies? 0/2

    Wow Trump sounds like an incompetent moron.

    He sure as heck is not my top choice for the Republican Party in 2024.

    Someone who hires people like Chris Wray and John Bolton isn’t going to save America.

    Between the 2020 summer of love and the election situation, Trump not declaring martial law or at least using limited emergency powers shows he’s in over his head.

  3. Correcting, the dems weren’t prepared for the overwhelming turnout in 2016 for Trump.

    They refined the cheat in 2018 and perfected it in 2020 thanks to C19.

    Who do want that creepy Ted Cruz in 2024?

    I’ll take 4 years of Trump in 2024 followed by 8 with DeSantis.

    Of course we need to get rid of CCP involvement in our elections which has been proven but not reported by the media.

  4. They refined the cheat while on Trump’s watch? Then maybe he should have cleaned out the intel agencies instead of heading them with deep state and neocon goons.

    And somehow as soon as Trump was gone a Republican won in Virginia and nearly won statewide in New Jersey (flipped a bunch of legislative seats though).

    Maybe other Republicans are just more likable than Trump.

    Guy is radioactive in suburbs.

    He’s not very popular with women or young people.

    Bunch of House districts somehow voted for Republicans in the US House and state legislature but didn’t pick Trump 4 pres.

    When Georgia wanted to remain open during the pandemic Trump criticized them for it.

    Trump wasted his time pandering to blacks promising them gibs while they were burning the country down.

    Trump blew it.

    Trump goes out to rallies and brags about how quickly he produced a vaccine.

    What an idiot.

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