Ken's Project Blog

October 26, 2010

The Chicago Way

Filed under: Politics — Ken @ 10:35 pm

Democrat Donkey Logo
Over in Illinois they have a new system for requesting “vote by mail” ballots, but it seems the Democrats are pushing the system, and by trying to make sure things go smoothly, they appear to be causing some problems.

As I understand it, first the voters completes an application form requesting a vote-by-mail ballot, and that form goes to the county clerk, which send the voter a ballot, which the voter fills out and returns to the county clerk ASAP. The intention is that the vote-by-mail forms are opened and counted on election night in the precinct the voter is registered in.

Sounds simple, but the Illinois Democratic Coordinated Campaign (ILDCC) has inserted itself into the process, and there are some issues which may lead to voter disenfranchisement – improperly filled-in forms, overwhelming the system at the last-minute, and the curious issue that has the completed vote-by-mail requests returned by the voters to the ILDCC, who in turn passes them on to the proper county clerk. We’ll get to that last one in a minute, but it seems that the automated system that generated the request forms the ILDCC sent out put some erroneous information on the applications (birth date is mentioned in the video report linked above), which may or may not render the request invalid. It is up to the voter to ensure the form is correct before mailing it out. Another issue is that the ILDCC is still dropping off hundreds, if not thousands of initial requests daily, and the deadline for the ballots to be mailed out is Thursday – they may not be able to process all the submitted ballot requests by the end of Thursday, possibly leaving an untold number of voters waiting for vote-by-mail ballots that will never arrive.

But that last issue is the most curious – for some reason the ILDCC has put their PO Box as the return address for the vote-by-mail request forms, why would they do this? They claim it is “so that we can help ensure folks get their ballot on time and that we know who is voting.” What? Why does the ILDCC need to “know who is voting”?

The ILDCC sent out 404,000 vote-by-mail requests for this election, so the potential for problems is immense.

But then again, what could possibly go wrong?

Voters who were expecting vote-by-mail ballots can still vote in-person, if:

  • the voter submits to the election judges their absentee ballot, or a portion of the ballot for cancellation;
  • the voter fills out an affidavit stating that they never received the absentee ballot;
  • or the voter fills out an affidavit stating they completed and returned an absentee ballot and the election authority did not receive it.

Source: Who May Vote By Absentee Ballot?

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