You should be aware that if you plan, as I do, to write-in your candidate preference for president or any office, it might not count in Illinois.
That's right, if you plan to write in, say Bernie Sanders or Paul Ryan, for president, it won't be counted in Illinois. And if you plan to write in a candidate for another office, such as congressman or state representative, it won't count either unless it is certified by the state.
This is especially shocking when the number of write-ins are expected to explode in this election when two exceptionally unworthy candidates are running for president.
How can this be? Why should you be prohibited from writing in your favorite candidate whoever he or she is, or even your own name, if that's what you desire?
According to Illinois Statutes §§17-16.1 and 18-9.1 of the Election Code (10 ILCS 5/17-16.1 and 10 ILCS 5/18-9.1) anyone who wants to run as a write-in candidate (i.e. their name does not appear on the ballot) must first submit papers to the state that he wants to be certified as a write-in candidate. A list of certified write-in candidates then is issued (see below). When the votes are counted in the precinct, only those who have been certified will have their votes counted. Any write-ins votes not on the list will not be counted.
This supposedly is for the convenience of the vote-counters and to streamline the process. That way vote counting won't be slowed or complicated by write-in votes for Donald Duck, None of the Above, or Dr. Vinny Boombatz.
Which is baloney.
The number of Donald Duck votes cast are merely an annoyance, if that. It's not like they are any significant hinderance to the vote-counting process.
And even if they were, it's not reason enough to restrict a voter's right to choose to express his preference, no matter how off-beat it is. Voters who write in Mickey Mouse are making a strong statement about the candidates. They like none of them. They're fed up.
The real reason your right to express yourself at election time is to restrict your choice. Just as your congressional and legislative districts have been gerrymandered by House Speaker Mike Madigan and his Democratic sheep to restrict your choice and to favor incumbent and ruling party candidates.
This also is the case in some other states, but it's a familiar tune in Illinois where everything that the state does is for the preservation of power for pols, their contractor friends and their patronage army.
It should be no surprise.
Here are the "certified" write-in candidates for president and senator in Illinois. There also are a few other certified write-in candidates for state legislator. You can check the full list here.
President and Vice President of the United States
Darrell Castle & Scott Bradley
Duff Cooper Smith
Laurence Kotlikoff & Edward Leamer
Joseph A Maldonado
Kevin P McKee
Marshall Roy Schoenke & James Creighton Mitchell, Jr.
David G Stack
James T. Struck
Roy Wayne Tyree
Mary A. Vann
United States Senator
Eric Kufi James Stewart
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