PEORIA, Ill. (WMBD) — The objection arbitration process began on Tuesday, sparking multiple challenges to petitions from political candidates in central Illinois.
In the gubernatorial race, the GOP candidate has his petitions challenged by the team of GOP opponent Gary Rabine. Matthew Custardo, Rabine’s campaign attorney, filed an objection against Sullivan and his running mate Kathleen Murphy.
When WMBD asked Rabine why his team decided to challenge Sullivan’s petitions, he provided the following response:
“We believe in the integrity of elections not only at the polling station on election day, but also while participating in the ballot.”
Gary Rabin | GOP gubernatorial candidate
The Illinois State Board of Elections provided WMBD with the documents showing Custardo’s challenge, which alleges Sullivan and Murphy have an insufficient number of signatures to be eligible.
The challenge also alleges that some people are not registered voters and that others signed the application documents with signatures that are “not genuine.”
The report also says Custardo objects that the nomination materials contain petition sheets that “demonstrate a pattern of fraud and disregard for the election code.” Twelve people were named in the challenge.
Sullivan’s team sent the following statement to WMBD in response.
“Corrupt Illinois politicians of both parties, and Michael Madigan in particular, have used these tactics for decades to rig Illinois elections in their favor. These same interests worry about a Governor Sullivan. And they should be. He is the only political outsider in this race capable of ending the insider games and secret business that politicians feast on.
“As attorneys argue over whether our petition pages have been secured with staples or paper clips, Jesse is working directly with our state sheriffs on a plan to take back our streets, meeting with parents and educators in counties of Lake and Winnebago to talk about the School Choice Benefit. to families in Illinois and speaking with thousands of Republican voters about his ethics program. We look forward to a quick victory and put this political spectacle behind us.
Statement from Sullivan’s spokesperson to WMBD
These objections also impact local candidates running in different state representative races.
Tazewell County Treasurer Mary Burress, who is running for the 87th District, is one of the contested candidates.
Burress told WMBD, “The objection filed by Mr. Alexander is petty and frivolous, and will be overruled. I will be on the ballot and look forward to running for Republican votes in my new district.
The challenger is listed as Clinton’s Joe Alexander.
Political newcomer Travis Weaver is also challenged. Weaver tells WMBD it’s a “tactic used by his opponent.”
“Several legal professionals have told me that this is one of the most frivolous challenges they have ever seen. It’s a clear tactic by my opponent to distract from the fact that he has an anti-corporate, anti-farmer voting record and is incredibly divisive because he’s a state representative while being mayor .
“The challenge alleges that I do not live at the address I claim as it is listed as a wedding venue. There is a barn on the property which becomes a wedding venue, but anyone can walk down War Memorial to Kickapoo and see that there’s clearly a house in. And if they pass by late at night or early in the morning, they’ll see my car parked in the driveway.
“The challenge also alleges that I lived in Chicago until recently because that’s where Caterpillar listed my office address. That’s a shot in the dark. Everyone in Peoria knows that Cat was completely remote during the pandemic I had temporary residency there at one point but my priories have always been in central Illinois and I completely transitioned home once work distance started more than two years ago.
Weaver Travis | Candidate IL-93(R)
There are a total of 140 objections listed on the Illinois State Board of Elections website. Matt Dietrich, the public information officer for the State Board of Elections, said the amount was “more than usual.”
Two Democratic candidates for Illinois’ 17th congressional district are also contested. These candidates are Bradley Martin and Jacqueline McGowan.