Statement from the Illinois Ballot Access Petition Challenger

As Richard Winger reported July 2 on Ballot Access News, the presidential petitions in Illinois for the Justice, Socialist, and Constitution parties, as well as the “Together Enhancing America” petition for candidate Michael Hawkins, were all challenged as insufficient.

This is significant because in Illinois, parties or candidates that petition to appear on the presidential ballot will appear as long as their petitions are not challenged and found to be inadequate. All parties challenged here appear to not meet the state’s ballot access requirements.

The challenge was made by Cook County Green Party chairman Rob Sherman. He sent the following message to explain his decision:

I’ve read every word of every Illinois Green Party post during the past three days, plus many direct e-mails from concerned political party members from around the country.  Here’s my perspective on the controversies regarding my challenges to presidential candidates, in which one set of candidates that submitted one signature (just 24,999 short), one set of candidates that submitted two signatures (24,998 short), one set of candidates who submitted about 250 signatures (just 24,750 short) and one candidate for president who submitted one signature and didn’t even list a Vice Presidential candidate.  The Illinois Green Party, on the other hand, submitted over 30,000 signatures, collected by hundreds of volunteers and supported by thousands of dollars in donations to cover volunteers’ expenses and the expense of the operation.

Of course, I welcome your comments.

If you want to have volunteers, donors and paid staff willing to contribute the next time, you absolutely cannot disrespect their efforts by telling them that they just wasted ALL of their time and money, because candidates could have gotten on the ballot without doing ANY of the things that our people did.  You won’t have volunteers and donors, the next time, if you do that.

Part of my job as Cook County Green Party Chairman is to think ahead about the matter of volunteers and donations in future years.  I need to make sure that we don’t destroy our ability to generate volunteers and donors in future years, by telling our contributors that they were just throwing their time and money away because candidates can just as easily get on the ballot with none of that work or money.

Our donors and volunteers wouldn’t publicly complain if I dropped my objections, but I doubt that they would be back to do it, all over again, the next time, if they thought that they were completely wasting their efforts. I’m not going to just throw away all of their efforts and walk away from all of their hard work, by telling the challenged candidates that they can have the same ballot benefits as us, without putting forth any of the effort, time or money that we did.

Unless you have been out there, collecting nominating petition signatures (as I did when I ran for State Rep in 2006 and 2008 and for Village Clerk in 2010), you have no idea how incredibly taxing it is on the legs and feet, and how challenging it is to be out there in all kinds of weather, such as day after day of 90+ degree heat this year, and frigid conditions with frequent blowing snow when I was out there in previous years.  After all of that intense physical suffering by so many, you want me to do what?

The Dems and Repubs didn’t challenge any presidential Third Partiers because they want the Third Party voters divided as widely as possible. As Andy wrote at noon on Tuesday, if Third Party votes are divided among many candidates, all Third Party presidential candidates would appear to be weak and inconsequential since none would be generating a respectable percentage of the vote.

That’s exactly what the Dems and Repubs want, but that’s exactly the opposite of what we need.  We want to demonstrate that we are a strong and credible political force that is rapidly moving in the direction of overthrowing the government at the ballot box.  That’s why the Dems and Repubs didn’t challenge anybody but I did.

Indeed, Dems and Repubs have a long-standing political trick for protecting lousy incumbents.  If somebody is going to run against the incumbent, the D’s and R’s make sure that lots of names appear on the ballot.  Opposition totals are so fragmented amongst the many opponents that the lousy incumbent can retain office with much less than 50% of the vote.  It’s a trick.

Jessica, at 11:09 p.m. on Tuesday, wrote, “I don’t see the harm of having more options on the ballot.”  I disagree.  We don’t have to be suckers and affirm the “split up / divide the opposition” trick to our detriment.  We should be doing everything we can to ensure that this trick doesn’t work against us.  It doesn’t matter whether the D’s and/or R’s are behind such a trick, this time.  The effect is the same.  My challenges are necessary to negate the effect of that type of situation from prospective candidates who have not done anything to earn their way onto the ballot.

Audrey, who if you didn’t know is co-chair of the Green Party of the United States, wrote, in an e-mail at 7:59 a.m. on Tuesday, about the difference between reasonable and repressive ballot access laws.  I’m all for ballot access, which is why I have repeatedly gone to Springfield at my own expense (have any of you?) to testify before legislative Election Law committees in support of lowering the number of signatures required, and in support of making signature requirements level for all candidates, as Patrick suggested in his e-mail at 11:29 a.m. on Tuesday.  For that reason, I wouldn’t have challenged anybody trying to get on the presidential ballot with 3,000 valid signatures, because if that’s the standard for D’s and R’s, it should be the standard for everybody.

Walter indicated, in an e-mail at 4:09 a.m. on Tuesday, that we might get “hammered in the media for challenging these petitions” and that “This is going to completely destroy our credibility if Rob doesn’t withdraw his objections.”  I disagree.  This is called “blaming the victim.”  We aren’t the ones that sought ballot access with a preposterously small number of signatures.  They are.  It is them who are going to get hammered in the media for doing the wrong thing, not us for doing the right thing.  The challenged candidates ought to be apologizing to us for their misconduct, rather than us apologizing to them for objecting to their gross misconduct.

Walter reversed his position in an e-mail at 1:14 p.m. on Tuesday, saying “We should be prepared with well reasoned arguments.”  Nancy agreed with that sentiment at 1:28 p.m. on Tuesday.  That’s what this e-mail is all about.

Audrey also wrote, at 9:07 a.m. on Tuesday, to express concern about the effect that my challenges would have on ballot access cases in other states. Not to worry.  There’s a big difference between file one, or two hundred, signatures, and a law that requires 85,000 signatures.  For that reason, my challenges will help, not hurt, those cases, because I have a long established history of advocating for reasonable ballot access. Neither one signature nor 85,000 are reasonable for statewide elections. Somewhere between 1,000 to 3,000 is reasonable.  Audrey seemed to agree in her e-mail at 9:14 p.m. on Wednesday, when she said, “I don’t see how the preservation of petitions demonstrating the support of exactly one voter will persuade the court that minor parties have demonstrated a modicum of support elsewhere in the U.S.”

Rich wrote, at 10:51 a.m. on Tuesday, that he has “a problem with our party attacking the interests of another pro-labor party.”  Rich has it backwards. It is those other parties that are attacking us by running candidates against our candidates.  We are trying to win an election, but they are attacking us by running candidates against our people.  If they were truly our friends, they wouldn’t be supporting opponents to run against the Green Party.  It is them who should be apologizing to us, not the other way around.

In that same e-mail, Rich wrote, “I know nothing about Michael Hawkins.” Here’s all you need to know about him:  He called me on the phone, Tuesday evening, to complain, bitterly, about my challenge to his papers.  He became increasingly agitated.  He insisted that we meet in person.  I told him that I would be glad to meet him at the offices of the State Board of Elections when my challenge is heard by them.  He said, “No.”  He then told me that I was “destroying his dream,” that he wanted to “meet with me tonight,” that “he knew where I lived from the papers that I filed” and that he was “on his way over to my house, immediately, to settle this matter right now.”  I immediately invoked the “disaster plan” that I have had on standby with the Buffalo Grove Police Department for many years because I am a prominent public figure.  I quickly got my wife and daughter out of the way for their safety.  The matter with Hawkins is now resolved and the threat is passed. Thank you, again, BGPD, for being ready.  As Andy wrote in an e-mail at noon on Tuesday, “Michael Hawkins is a nut job.”

It was shortly after that incident that I started reading all of your e-mails about how I should drop my challenges to Hawkins and the others. I am literally risking my life, and the lives of the members of my family, to stand up for the Green Party.  I’m not going to withdraw any of my challenges, as Phil urged in an e-mail at 11:06 p.m. on Tuesday, when we worked so hard to follow the rules, and continue to risk so much, while they don’t bother to put forth any serious effort at all.

In that same e-mail, Rich expressed concern about harming “strategic alliances with other parties.”  They chose to run candidates against us without getting nominating petition signatures.  It is them who should be concerned about harming their relationships with us, not us concerned about harming our relationships with them.

Gary, who is a member of the Coalition for Free and Open Elections, wrote, at 4:01 p.m. on Tuesday, that “Every party on the ballot is a step toward electoral freedom.”  No!  Every candidate on the ballot who hasn’t earned his way onto the ballot waters down the Third Party vote, which has the exact opposite effect on electoral freedom by preserving the two corporate parties.

Audrey, Sheldon and Rita “get it” with regards to why I filed my challenges. At 6:19 a.m. on Wednesday, Audrey wrote:  If the “Socialist and Justice Party candidates dilute the Green Party vote in November … why would it be in ILGP’s interest to accede to their frivolous petitions?”  Sheldon wrote, at 8:31 a.m. on Wednesday, “We will lose votes if there are 8 candidates on the ballot.”  At 10:07 a.m. on Wednesday, Rita wrote, the “purpose of the objection process … is to remove non-serious … candidates.  We need to advocate for more equitable ballot access while not abdicating our responsibility as watchdogs to prevent abuse of ballot access loopholes that can cripple our good-faith efforts.” Precisely!

This isn’t about being friends with other progressives.  This is about changing our society for the better by getting progressives, namely our people, elected.  That won’t happen through weakness achieved through allowing undeserving candidates to dilute our vote totals.

I became Cook County Chairman for the specific purpose of taking the Green Party to the Big Leagues and having our candidates actually win elections, not merely engage in feel-good rhetoric about, gosh, wouldn’t it be nice if only we were in office?  I’m playing to win.

Phil wrote, at 12:38 p.m. on Wednesday, that my challenge could have the effect of “Destroying the relationship we have” with the Constitution Party. I disagree.  It is the Constitution Party that should be worried about destroying their relationship with us for using a severely deficient set of nominating papers in an effort to take votes away from our candidate.

All of the challenged candidates can still get on the ballot via Write-In. Having your name pre-printed on the ballot implies that you got at least 25,000 signature on nominating petitions, that you complied with all of the other election laws AND that you have a sufficiently broad base of support in Illinois that merits voters using their time to do research about the listed candidates.

That last one is a very important factor.  Voters have a limited amount of time to do candidate research.  It’s not fair to trick voters into spending their time doing research on a candidate by falsely implying, by being pre-printed on the ballot, that they have amassed a broad base of support in Illinois for their candidacy when they actually haven’t.

IT WOULD BE A FRAUD AGAINST THE TIME OF THE VOTERS FOR CANDIDATES  TO FALSELY IMPLY THAT THEY HAVE A BROAD BASE OF SUPPORT, BY PRE-PRINTING THOSE CANDIDATES’ NAMES ON THE BALLOT WHEN, IF FACT, THOSE CANDIDATES HAVE NO SUCH SUPPORT.  So, what I’m doing through my challenge is protecting voters from having their time wasted by candidates who falsely claim that their campaign platform and character have generated sufficiently wide public supported to merit being pre-printed on the ballot.

Withdrawing would imply that my actions were impulsive, not well thought out and shift with the wind.  As you can see by the above commentary, that definitely is not the case.  I carefully considered the matters that I discussed, above, before making the decision to file objections.

The candidates whom I challenged are welcome to contact me and try to explain to me rob@robsherman.com or (847) 870-0700 why they should be on the ballot.  In particular, what I want to know from them is:  What should I, the Cook County Green Party Chairman, tell the volunteers who worked thousands of hours in scorching hot weather and walked thousands of miles, collectively, as to why I should withdraw my challenges and allow these other candidates to get on the ballot with one or two or, in one case, about 250, signatures?  What should I tell the donors who collectively contributed thousands of dollars, as to why these other candidates should waltz onto the ballot without doing anything?

The ballot is open to anybody.  We organized, did the work and raised the money, so we’re on the ballot.  They didn’t so they’re not going to be.

Finally, leadership is about doing what’s right and convincing others to follow you.  What Andy and I are doing is right.  Now that you know why, I urge you to follow or, at least, respect our decision.

You are all welcome to respond.  Use the Illinois Green Party listserve if you are part of that system.  Otherwise, feel free to contact me directly.

60 thoughts on “Statement from the Illinois Ballot Access Petition Challenger

  1. Richard Winger

    Rob Sherman seems unaware that the Constitution Party and the Green Party are co-plaintiffs in 5 important constitutional ballot access cases. In four of those cases, those two parties are the only two plaintiff parties. Weakening the Constitution Party will make it easier for the states to beat us in court. The state attorneys can’t defend the early deadlines, so they attack the plaintiff parties. Evidence in these cases includes the number of states in which each of the parties is on the ballot nationwide.

  2. DJ

    The bulk of his argument seems to be that he doesn’t want other parties to “spoil” the election by pulling votes from the Greens.

    Also, if the CP, SP, and JP could get on the ballot with minimal signatures–that just makes the GP a bunch of idiots for collecting the unnecessary sigs.

  3. Ben Schattenburg

    Richard, considering these parties had barely any signatures wouldn’t the state have kept them off the ballot anyway?

  4. Trent Hill

    “because I am a prominent public figure. ”

    Seems like an ego trip to me.

    His arguments are really lackluster.

  5. Trent Hill

    Ben,

    No, the state wouldn’t have. It requires a “challenge” to their petition. As long as they have a petition, and no one challenges, they could be on the ballot.

  6. Krieger

    Check out Rob Sherman’s website, he is a hilariously self-absorbed douche. He has a truck and a plane with his name on it. Seriously. I hope that no Constitution Party (or Justice/Socialist) supporters blame the Green Party as a whole for that moron. Sigh.

  7. bruuno

    Wow. What an egomaniacal jerk. And his reasoning regarding ‘dividing up’ the 3rd Party vote is nonsensical on every level. The reason the major parties didn’t challenge is because IL will go to Obama by a large margin, no reason to waste time and energy (plus ill will) challenging them. And it wreaks of hypocrisy to whine about the exact same thing that Dems base their objections to the ‘spoiler’ Greens (dividing the vote). Plus what does Michael Hawkins’ behavior have to do with the other petitions?
    Again, what an egomaniacal jerk.

  8. Pingback: Howie Hawkins, Others Respond to Rob Sherman On Illinois Ballot Access Challenges | Independent Political Report

  9. paulie

    The bulk of his argument seems to be that he doesn’t want other parties to “spoil” the election by pulling votes from the Greens.

    Now let me think, where have I heard that before?About parties “spoiling” the election by pulling votes from other parties….? Oh.

    Also, if the CP, SP, and JP could get on the ballot with minimal signatures–that just makes the GP a bunch of idiots for collecting the unnecessary sigs.

    It’s not idiotic to try to submit a challenge-proof number of signatures, but the Greens did not actually do that. Had their petition been challenged they would have very likely been knocked off.

    True, they did file more than 25k, but not enough more to withstand scrutiny if someone actually looked through the petition signers to see how many are Illinois registered voters, unless their validity rate is far above anything I have ever heard of on an Illinois statewide petition.

    The Libertarians were the only one who actually submitted a number of signatures that is likely to have been challenge proof, and even that is not certain – in 1998 we filed over 63k and got booted off with a challenge.

    If Greens challenge Socialist and Constitution petitions maybe next time someone from those parties will want to return the “favor” in which case the Greens would need a lot more signatures than they had this year.

    So, as if their job was not hard enough this year in getting on the ballot, Mr. Sherman has now increased the chances that they will have to work twice as hard next time or risk having all that work be for nothing due to a challenge.

    I’ve petitioned for Libertarian ballot access in Illinois in four different elections and worked to try to beat back a challenge in a fifth. I’ve also petitioned in many other states for the last 15 years for the Libertarians, Greens, and two of the parties Mr. Sherman is challenging off the ballot, among others.

    I hope he withdraws his challenge, although he does not sound open to that based on his statements in the article above.

  10. Nick Kruse

    I, for one, agree with Rob on this one. If your party only has the ability or laziness to collect 1, 2, or 250 signatures, then you shouldn’t be on the ballot. If you can’t find someone willing to be your VP, then you shouldn’t be on the ballot. If you don’t bother to list presidential electors to vote for you in December if you win (which only requires filling out one more form), then you shouldn’t be on the ballot.

  11. Nick Kruse

    @11-If you read the comments at the BAN article that you are referring to, you will see many comments by me supporting Rob Sherman’s actions.

  12. paulie

    Yes, I did see those. However, I don’t think you have responded to all of the points made by the arguments on the other side.

  13. Nick Kruse

    “For that reason, I wouldn’t have challenged anybody trying to get on the presidential ballot with 3,000 valid signatures, because if that’s the standard for D’s and R’s, it should be the standard for everybody.”

    No one should expect to get on the ballot for less signatures than the Demopublicans do. 1, 2, or 250 signatures is simply not enough.

  14. Nick Kruse

    “Walter indicated, in an e-mail at 4:09 a.m. on Tuesday, that we might get “hammered in the media for challenging these petitions” and that “This is going to completely destroy our credibility if Rob doesn’t withdraw his objections.””

    First, this does not appear to be an orchestrated effort involving the entire Illinois Green Party. The objection was only filed by one man. Secondly, the media doesn’t know we exist. How can they hammer us if they don’t know we exist??

  15. Nick Kruse

    “He then told me that I was “destroying his dream,” that he wanted to “meet with me tonight,” that “he knew where I lived from the papers that I filed” and that he was “on his way over to my house, immediately, to settle this matter right now.””

    Running for president is a game to a lot of people. They think that by being on the ballot in one state will fulfill some fantasy they had when they were in first grade. That is why over 200 people file Statements of Candidacy with the FEC for the office of president every four years.

  16. zapper

    Rob Sherman’s arguments are perfectly logical. He has chosen a course of action that fits with his personal belief system – that, when the ends are important and worthy, the State has the right to regulate, rule, tax, control, arrest, detain, imprison or destroy any individual who may impede that state interest.

    Who is it that determines what cause, what goal, what end is so necessary that an individual is forced to sacrifice his basic human rights? … Why the king, governor, the legislature, the courts and, of course, Rob Sherman.

    And what dangerous act makes such infringment of personal liberty so essential? … terrorism and mass murder unleashed by invading armies armed with nukes and backed by traitors in our midst …? Why, even more dangerous than those … it’s the danger posed by individual candidates with ideas, the freedom of speech that diseminates those ideas and the chance that others may listen, agree and cast a vote in support of those ideas.

    Yes Rob Sherman … freedom is too dangerous to be allowed, especially freedoms such as freedom of speech and association, freedom of personal conscience and personal choice, freedom to seek political office and freedom to vote for the candidate of one’s choice.

    Good for you. These things must be quashed. “Nip it in the bud.”

    Thank you for defending us so that the ubermensch of the Green-Nazi ruling elite – our wise and all knowing Rob Sherman – can be our almighty savior.

    Praise be to Rob Sherman. Amen.

  17. Lawrence Rockwood

    Who does Mr. Sherman think put these restrictions in the election law in the first place? Jefferson or Washington? In the contemporary society, asking people to give personal information to complete strangers putting themselves at risk of identity theft is ridiculous. Mr. Sherman thinks he can only put his party at the expense of others. The fact is, with the likes of Mr. Sherman, there will be no cooperation between third parties. To attack the access of the organizations that helped get his party access in critical states like New York . Talk about putting the “G” in ingratitude. If it were up to the Shermans of this world his party would not exist. Like the Dems, he understands Dems as a zero sum game of expanding his voice by diminishing others. He is a bully.

  18. Lawrence Rockwood

    Here is an appeal of Howie Hawkins to Mr. Sherman. Howkins is a Socialist Party member who is also the chair of the Green Party of New York State who could not have achieved ballot access for his party without the help of my party.
    “My appeal to Mr. Sherman to withdraw his objections:

    Dear Mr. Sherman,

    I urge you to withdraw your challenges to the ballot access petitions of four presidential candidates.

    I write this as someone who joined the Socialist Party USA when it reformed in 1973 and has been active in the Green Party since our first national organizing meeting in St. Paul, Minnesota in august 1984. I was also involved in the Peace and Freedom registration drive for party status and ballot access in 1967-68 in California, in the People’s Party presidential campaign of Ben Spock and Julius Hobson in 1972, and the Citizens Party presidential campaign of Barry Commoner and LaDonna Harris in 1980.

    I know how hard it is to get on the ballot. I’ve petitioned successfully 17 of 19 attempts for myself and petitioned countless times for other Green candidates, with mixed success because of major party challenges or state official malfeasance. I have been challenged on my own petitions by the Democrats almost every time, most of them utterly frivolous challenges that served only to force me to devote limited time and resources to defend my petition instead of campaign for the office.

    I appreciate the hard work that the Illinois Green Party put into petition to put the Green Party presidential ticket on the Illinois ballot. As you know, I was the vice-presidential candidate on the petition as a stand-in until our presidential nominee chooses a running mate. I congratulate you on a job well done.

    Nonetheless, I believe Greens should support the ability of all candidates to be on the ballot. Let the voters decide!

    Greens should not use the restrictive ballot access rules to eliminate candidates. Those rules were written by the two corporate parties to exclude alternatives. Greens should be in solidarity with other parties on reforming ballot access laws, not acting like the Democrats and Republicans do to exclude them.

    Also keep in mind that ballot access challenges are a double-edged sword. The Greens are working very hard to get on the ballot in many states this year where the requirements are very onerous. If one of our members challenge other parties in Illinois, we cannot credibly object if one of them challenges a Green petition in another state.

    It would be a self-inflicted defeat if progressive independents allow rules written by the corporate parties to exclude all of us end up dividing and conquering us. I suggest that a better approach is that we support each others’ ballot access this year and work in the future toward an electoral united front against the corporate two-party-system.

    The most important divide politically today is not between progressive third parties, but between all of them and the corporate rulers. Once we break open ballot access and replace the winner-take-all two-corporate-party system of rule with proportional representation for full representation and democracy, then the various strands of independent progressive politics can run their own slates, win their own proportionate shares of legislative representation, the can debate, negotiate, and legislate policies during their term in office.

    But today we need solidarity against the corporate parties’ attempts to silence us. To restricting ballot access, we must add the Citizens United repeal of the Tilden Act ban on corporate campaign spending, preventive detention of organizers before demonstrations, the war on whistlelbowers using the Espionage Act, the federal coordination of the suppression of Occupy, warrantless surveillance of all our phone calls and emails by the National Security Agency, and many other bipartisan assaults to our political freedoms and constitutional rights.

    We need unity in the fight to for our freedoms. I want the Greens to set a positive example in this respect.

    Please withdraw your petition objections.

    Sincerely,

    Howie Hawkins, Syracuse, New York, delegate to the Green National Committee”

  19. zapper

    Addendum: My comments above are directed at Rob Sherman alone as he seems to have acted alone, and not other Green Party members of which many, and perhaps most, would oppose Rob Sherman’s actions.

  20. DJ

    “I immediately invoked the ‘disaster plan’ that I have had on standby with the Buffalo Grove Police Department for many years because I am a prominent public figure.”

    Okay, this is obviously just thrown in here to make him sound more important than he is. I am sure that his “disaster plan” is essentially dialing 9-1-1. Second, he is not a prominent public figure–I am sorry, but he is just not relevant to anyone other than himself.

  21. Lawrence Rockwood

    Wouldn’t it be interesting to have Mr Sherman and Mr. Hawkins address the Annual Coalition for Free & Open Elections (COFOE) Meeting being hosted by the Green party at their convention?

    “The Coalition for Free & Open Elections (COFOE) will hold its annual board meeting on July 15, Sunday, in Baltimore, at the Inner Harbor Holiday Inn, 301 W. Lombard Street, at noon. The meeting will be in the Harbor 2 Room. The Green Party is kindly making this room available to COFOE. The national convention of the Green Party will meet on the day before, Saturday, July 14, to choose a presidential and vice-presidential nominee, in the Chesapeake Ballroom of the same hotel. Then, on Sunday morning, the national committee of the Green Party will meet at 9 a.m. in the Harbor 2 Room, but that meeting is expected to be finished by noon, making the space available for the COFOE meeting.

    COFOE was formed in 1985, and is a loose coalition of most of the nation’s nationally-organized parties, other than the two major parties. Also included are organizations that are interested in the legal problems of political parties and independent candidates. The COFOE board currently includes representatives from the Conservative Party, the Constitution Party, the Green Party, the Libertarian Party, the Reform Party, the Socialist Party, the Working Families Party, Free & Equal, and the Committee for a Unified Independent Party.”

  22. William Saturn Post author

    zapper @17

    Excellent comment. Wish I could “like” or “upvote” it.

  23. Andy Finko

    So, what I hear from Richard Winger and all the people he has “motivated” to support his position, that everyone is equal. Do not let competition and the “free” market decide who can run for the most important elected office in the USA, let anyone and their brother fill file for the office. I’m looking forward to a “Anyone Can Run for President” campaign next time around, and encourager everyone to file for President with one, or two signatures, or whatever they can contribute, based upon their abilities….

    And third parties will continue to thrive, bickering amongst themselves, in obscurity. Divided and conquered.

    Setting aside the election-fictions, Richard Winger’s behind the scenes rigging of the ballot sounds very anarcho-marxist to me: (a) laws don’t apply, and (b) “From each according to his ability, to each according to his needs.”

    Isn’t this what is really being advocated here? Which is also an approach favored by the Democratic Machine in Illinois, and its emperor, Michael Madigan.

  24. NewFederalist

    I have never known Richard Winger to advocate anything less than open ballot access for all. Do you have a problem with that?

  25. DJ

    @ 24,

    So you don’t believe in the more choices, more voices philosophy? Why not narrow the field, then. All these pesky third party candidates diluting the vote–lets just have a two party system, where the top two vote getters are the ones who make the rules. That sounds like a good idea. Now which parties should fulfill that role? It isn’t going to be the Greens, that is for sure, so I would assume they wouldn’t support this policy, lest they cease to exist. Oh wait…Rob Sherman was making the same argument.

  26. Lydia Kelemen

    Rob can refuse to remove his challenge and I will refuse to vote for the Green Party in my state – it really is that simple for those of us who support voting options. Laziness had nothing to do with it – small, less popular parties have limited resources and funds. Ballot laws are restrictive and it is a shame that Rob has such a limited perspective. Nasty politics is why many of us seek third parties as an alternative – we know they won’t win but they allow us an alternative to the big money parties that demonstrate politics as ususal. That is not what many of us were wanting of the Green Party. A shame! Your Party will be losing two votes in a swing state this year!

  27. Michael W. Hawkins, (M.W.)

    To My Supporters
    Democrats for M.W.
    Republicans for M.W.
    Independents for M.W.
    Thank You All

    My Gifts to you Page one

    1. http://www.democratsformw.com , for the Democrats support I give The 25 Million jobs Corporation that we created this year thru the Humphrey-Hawkins FULL Employment act of 1978.
    2. http://www.republicansformw.com , for the Republicans support I give The Big Business Administration,
    to help separate government and business. Up to 25 million for their corporation that we created this year thru the Humphrey-Hawkins FULL Employment act of 1978.
    3. http://www.independentsformw.com , for the Independents support I give The Insurance Bank Corporation, creating the future for now. Up to 25 million for their corporation that we created this year thru the Humphrey-Hawkins FULL Employment act of 1978.
    4. Together Enhancing America Part y, I give Administration and Policy Creation and Evaluation, with all my crazy ideas mixed in.

    Thank you, Thank you and Thank you again !!!

    If I can be of assistance to you in the future, please do not hesitate to contact me.

    With kindest personal regards, I remain.

    Sincerely yours,

    Michael W. Hawkins, (M.W.)
    P.S. Please Ask Rob Sherman to withdraw his objections to my Petitions, so I can become the Best President ever
    I have degrees in Honors Science, Business Administration, Health Administration and 3 classes from completing a Masters in Public Administration with almost 320 college credits, you can tell I have been preparing myself. I am ready to march into hell for a heavenly cause— Together Enhancing America Party

    Rob Sherman I am asking you for Me and America!!! Please withdraw his objections to my Petitions, Please.

    Thank you,
    M.W.

  28. Michael W. Hawkins, (M.W.)

    To My Supporters
    Democrats for M.W.
    Republicans for M.W.
    Independents for M.W.
    Thank You All

    My Gifts to you Page one

    1. http://www.democratsformw.com , for the Democrats support I give The 25 Million JOBS Corporation that we created this year thru the Humphrey-Hawkins FULL Employment act of 1978.
    2. http://www.republicansformw.com , for the Republicans support I give The Big Business Administration,
    to help separate government and business. Up to 25 million JOBS for their corporation that we created this year thru the Humphrey-Hawkins FULL Employment act of 1978.
    3. http://www.independentsformw.com , for the Independents support I give The Insurance Bank Corporation, creating the future for now. Up to 25 million JOBS for their corporation that we created this year thru the Humphrey-Hawkins FULL Employment act of 1978.
    4. Together Enhancing America Part y, I give Administration and Policy Creation and Evaluation, with all my crazy ideas mixed in.

    Thank you, Thank you and Thank you again !!!

    If I can be of assistance to you in the future, please do not hesitate to contact me.

    With kindest personal regards, I remain.

    Sincerely yours,

    Michael W. Hawkins, (M.W.)
    P.S. Please Ask Rob Sherman to withdraw his objections to my Petitions, so I can become the Best President ever
    I have degrees in Honors Science, Business Administration, Health Administration and 3 classes from completing a Masters in Public Administration with almost 320 college credits, you can tell I have been preparing myself. I am ready to march into hell for a heavenly cause— Together Enhancing America Party

    Rob Sherman I am asking you for Me and America!!! Please withdraw his objections to my Petitions, Please.

    Thank you,
    M.W.
    This is for real, I need those with Superior Intellect to help Enhance America, Together!
    e-mail, mw2012@rocketmail.com

  29. Pingback: ‘Together Enhancing America’ Candidate Michael Hawkins Responds to Ballot Petition Challenge | Independent Political Report

  30. Ross

    Michael (Cavlan), that’s ridiculous. You initially, at least in the GPW comments, blamed the whole Green Party for this, while it is at most – and even that’s not certain from what’s been posted online – a county GP that’s initiated this. And if that’s not the case, it’s just a few members of the county’s GP. There are plenty of Greens, including, apparently, Jill Stein and her VP stand-in Howie Hawkins, who are opposed to this.

  31. Bubbalicious

    The town sheriff here in Analingus, Alabama is a big drunk. He’s always smelling of moonshine corn whiskey something bad. And he’s always locking up anyone that can drink more than he can. Is this sort of like that?

    Also, it must be a Yankee thing how Constitution Party supporters will vote for the Green Party if the Constitution Party is not on the ballot. I can tell y’all down here it sure ain’t nothin’ like that.

  32. Michael W. Hawkins, M.W.

    Hi, that site might still be down, I.T. has been working on it.

    O.K. I’ll help you guys out since you are not computer literate and have no ideas how to do Petitions on-line
    They will even let you download a free ebook
    I’m not making any money on this
    http://www.onlinecandidate.com
    http://www.onlinecandidateresources.com
    http://www.onlinecandidatelinks.com
    This way Mr. Shermans Lawyer will know why they are bringing up a frivolous Objections
    I am going to be a candidate for President of the United States

    Mighty With You

    To My Supporters
    Democrats for M.W.
    Republicans for M.W.
    Independents for M.W.
    Thank You All
    My Gifts to you Page one

    1. http://www.democratsformw.com , for the Democrats support I give The 25 Million jobs Corporation that we created this year thru the Humphrey-Hawkins FULL Employment act of 1978.
    2. http://www.republicansformw.com , for the Republicans support I give The Big Business Administration,
    to help separate government and business. Up to 25 million for their corporation that we created this year thru the Humphrey-Hawkins FULL Employment act of 1978.
    3. http://www.independentsformw.com , for the Independents support I give The Insurance Bank Corporation, creating the future for now. Up to 25 million for their corporation that we created this year thru the Humphrey-Hawkins FULL Employment act of 1978.
    4. Together Enhancing America Part y, I give Administration and Policy Creation and Evaluation, with all my crazy ideas mixed in.

    Thank you, Thank you and Thank you again !!!

    If I can be of assistance to you in the future, please do not hesitate to contact me.

    With kindest personal regards, I remain.

    Sincerely yours,

    Michael W. Hawkins, (M.W.)
    P.S. Please Ask Rob Sherman to withdraw his objections to my Petitions, so I can become the Best President ever
    I have degrees in Honors Science, Business Administration, Health Administration and 3 classes from completing a Masters in Public Administration with almost 320 college credits, you can tell I have been preparing myself. I am ready to march into hell for a heavenly cause— Together Enhancing America Party

    Rob Sherman I am asking you for Me and America!!! Please withdraw his objections to my Petitions, Please.

    Thank you,
    M.W.

  33. Michael W. Hawkins, M.W.

    75 million Jobs World Wide, 51% must stay in the U.S.
    Wow these guys know what they are doing
    Look up Humphrey- Hawkins Full employment law of 1978
    Also interviewwithgodsite.com is cool
    Thanks again
    (M.W.)

  34. Michael W. Hawkins, M.W.

    Mr. Rob@Robsherman.com,
    Said, All parties challenged here appear to not meet the state’s ballot access requirements.
    Wrong!!! He must not of checked. They fraudently used the same letter over and over>
    So they are required to submit an * original * for the Elections Boards Record and at least one copy for the candidate. In my case the board receved a copy and I receved a copy of a copy of a copy, Hey all the Candidates that he Objected to should contact my Lawyer–Mr. Lynch, They could get in on the Fraud case
    His office is in Palos Hills, 92nd & Roberts Rd.
    Thanks again,
    (M.W.)

  35. zapper

    One more little thought for Rob Sherman:

    You know that if it’s alright for the Greens to challenge other parties and candidates they don’t like because, well just because they can and it looks like they don’t have enough sigs to qualify for the ballot, then this will be the perfect excuse for either of the two major parties, or any of their leaders, or anyone you’ve riled up this time around out for revenge, to challenge the Greens or anyone else in IL next time out.

    So, you’d better be about collecting about 3 times the required number next campaign so you won’t lose the challenge that might just come, and might just bite you in the behind when the Green candidate is forced off the ballot as a result of being a few sigs short – I’ve just got that feelin’.

  36. George Phillies

    Mentioning Greens, is anyone aware of what name their National Committee is filing FEC reports under? The fling I am finding appears to be an organization that is functionally defunct, so I suspect there is some trick in the search.

  37. Michael Cavlan RN

    Ross

    No- I did not blame the National Green Party. I have pointed out the facts. Those are that this man IS the Cooke County Green Party Chair (elected to that position) and a former Green Party endorsed candidate for State Rep in Illinois.

  38. William Saturn Post author

    @41

    Hawkins is not a female libertarian. It will never work.

  39. Nick Kruse

    Michael Hawkins: “O.K. I’ll help you guys out since you are not computer literate and have no ideas how to do Petitions on-line…”

    You’d think a candidate for the highest office in the nation would know how to be polite.

  40. paulie

    zapper,

    Yep…I think I made that same point…can’t remember if it was in this thread or the other one…

  41. Ad Hoc

    @45 Dude Sounds like the Wayne Root of the Green Party. Or should that be that Wayne Root is the Rob Sherman of the Libertarian Party? LOL

  42. Green_Kid_Alien

    Challenging the petitions of any socialist, pro-labor, pro-environment party is shocking, appalling, and disgraceful. The left gets nowhere in this country in significant part because this fratricidal type of behavior is still tolerated. I urge the IL GP to take disciplinary action, up to and including expulsion, against any members who have engaged in conspiracy to challenge lawfully filed, non-fraudulent, prima facie valid petitions submitted by pro-labor, pro-environmental parties.

  43. SaveSherman

    This video is of one of Rob Sherman’s main rivals. The two of them have a long history together and to say Rob hates him is an understatement. If we could contact him, I don’t think Robby will be a problem in the future.

  44. Green_Kid_Alien

    #50 No, all the challenges are heinous and insupportable. The ones I singled out are heinous, insupportable, shocking, appalling, and disgraceful.
    As well as being fratricidal, and politically not smart. I hope that clarifies the distinction.

  45. Green_Kid_Alien

    #51 Of course, we can try and contact him, but he has already forgiven Robby. I think. Supposing he exists. Anyway, I don’t think Robby cares. Furthermore, even though the challenges are heinous, insupportable, shocking, appalling, and disgraceful, Robby isn’t the problem. Yes, there is a “Higher Power”, but it’s not a heavenly one. Or a satanic one, either. Very mundane, really.

  46. Pingback: Four Presidential Candidates Booted From Illinois Ballot

  47. Ad Hoc

    @ ballot-access.org:

    “The man who had challenged their petitions had decided to withdraw his challenges to their petitions. But the hearing officer refused to let him speak, so he wasn’t able to withdraw the challenges.”

    …oops…

  48. NewFederalist

    @56… that same article you cite also says the request to withdraw must be made in writing so it is not clear just what this guy was trying to do. Was he unaware of that requirement? Was he trying to get on both sides of the issue? I think all is still just speculation at this point.

  49. paulie

    It was not in the story. It appears you are referring to comment 24 at BAN by Illvotes:

    In IL you can’t withdraw an objection verbally, it must be done in writing submitted before the hearings. Rob Sherman is an idiot, incompetent, or just making silly excuses for this, take your pick. He can’t blame the elections board for this, period. Also, Sherman steadfastly denies he did this alone and is adamant that this decision was done in concert with his IL Greens. The IL Greens WILL PAY for this. Perhaps even this year if they want to switch Howie Hawkins as VP with their real VP candidate. If the IL Greens don’t release a statement condemning this action and move to take away Rob Sherman’s leadership position immediately, they are asking for it. Sherman has money, so we’ll soon see what the IL Greens care more about, democracy or money. I’ll bet they choose Sherman’s money.

    The IL Greens got very lucky this year as they did NOT submit enough signatures to withstand a challenge. They won’t get lucky again now. This will set the Greens in IL back ten years, hope it was worth it for them.

  50. paulie

    Sherman may have been dishonest in his deciding late to withdraw the objections, or maybe he really decide that but too late to do any good. I don’t know.

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