Put the Chicago GOP on suicide watch?
The Cook County GOP is considering adopting an amendment to its bylaws that amounts to a permanent surrender to the notorious Democrat machine that has run the city of Chicago and Cook County throughout living memory. The key issue is control over the appointment of election judges – the people who ensure the legitimacy of ballots and their tabulation. Under the proposed amendment to the bylaws, virtually any Democrat who refrained from voting in the last election could become a ward committeeman of the GOP and thus pick the GOP's election judge, who is supposed to ensure ballot integrity, along with the Democrats' own election judge. In effect, Democrats pick both election judges. What could go wrong? It's Chicago, after all.
Writing in Chicago City Wire, W.J. Kennedy explains:
The proposed amendment to the GOP Cook County bylaws – in a shocking maneuver – would allow Democrats to serve as Republican ward committeemen. These committeemen, under a change to the election laws made in 2014 by the Democratically controlled legislature, pick election judges. Before the change, the county chairman picked the judges.
"This sends us back to the old days of hack Democrats overseeing rigged elections," Chris Cleveland, chairman of the Chicago GOP, told Chicago City Wire. "You can say goodbye to (the) Republican Party in the city of Chicago."
Here is the type of mischief that would happen:
In all, 13 committeemen had to give up their seats after the adoption of the 2016 Cleveland amendment. Cleveland compiled a sampling of those who would get their seats back if the Morrison amendment goes through:
"Maria Bailey, 20th Ward
Maria is the mother of Kevin Bailey, the Democratic committeeman. Maria had never pulled a Republican ballot prior to running for office. She has a Pritzker sign in her front yard."
"George McKinley, 37th Ward
Magically, all of George's petition signatures are identical to the ones for Emma Mitts, the 37th Ward Democratic committeeman and Alderman. It seems that someone carried both a Democrat and a Republican petition down the streets of the 37th. Perhaps it isn't magic: George works in Emma's office."
"Fran Sapone, 29th Ward
She, too, had never pulled a Republican ballot in her life before she ran for office. She later filed suit before the Chicago Board of Elections, seeking to remove a slated Republican congressional candidate from the ballot, leaving the Democrat with no opponent. Her attorney was the treasurer of the 29th Ward Democrats."
"Larry Nelson, 24th Ward
You may have met Larry at previous meetings. Larry has pulled Democratic ballots because, as he said, 'you have to.' Most people who have met Larry would agree that he is not capable of recruiting and organizing elections judges, and yet year after year, he delivers a stack of perfectly filled-out election judge applications to the Board of Elections, all of whom are Democrats. Wherever could he have gotten them?"
If this goes through, attribute the surrender to lawfare: the use of litigation costs to intimidate opponents. Stalin purportedly observed, "It's not the people who vote that count; it's the people who count the votes."