Nominating meeting in Galesburg
The nominating meeting scheduled for committeemen and candidates in Galesburg is going on as I write.
If anyone has any news or reports on how it went, please share it with other readers.
Some quotes from a piece in the D/A regarding the meeting:
The meeting will start with an explanation of the legal opinion obtained by party officials that states only elected, not appointed, precinct committeemen are allowed to cast votes or nominate candidates, Don Johnston, 17th Congressional District Central Committee co-chairman, said.
Then, candidates will be nominated, again only by elected precinct committeemen. Nominations must be seconded, and candidates must be present to accept the nomination. After nominations have been made, central committee officials will explain how ballots will be mailed to the committeemen, and when they must be returned for counting.
Any extended fuss about any issues involving the nominating and voting process could derail the process and prevent candidates from speaking as Mr. Johnston has planned. How any protests or challenges will be handled is unclear.
"It depends," Mr. Johnston said. "We will have to play that by ear, but I don't expect any major dissention."
The legal opinion concerning the process, received earlier this week by Mr. Johnston and co-chair Mary Boland, asserted their belief that only elected precinct committeemen be allowed to vote.
"The opinion pretty much explains the position, and we think we have the most qualified election attorney in our area, or the state for that matter, providing the opinion," Mr. Johnston said. "We haven't heard of any legal challenges, so we don't expect any to our opinion.
"We are just plugging away to make this as legal and fair as we can."
Five candidates who have attended forums throughout the district are expected to be nominated for the ballot. They are Mike Boland, state representative from East Moline; Phil Hare, Rep. Evans' district director, from Moline; Rob Mellon, a teacher from Adams County; Mark Schwiebert, Rock Island mayor; and John Sullivan, state senator from Rushville. [Mellon is expected to drop out]
Issues that could be raised by committeemen are allowing appointed committeemen to vote, and whether to select a candidate at a convention rather than by mail-in ballot.
"Those issues are still out there," Mr. Johnston said.
Committeemen will be mailed ballots next week. Each committeeman will cast a number of votes equal to the number of Democratic ballots cast in their precinct in the March primary. They are free to spread their votes among various candidates on the ballot.
The ballots must be returned within 15 days to a sealed post office box. After the deadline, the ballots will be counted by the central committee and several county clerks from throughout the district and a winner will be announced.
After a winner is announced a nomination must be filed with the Illinois State Board of Election.