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Zurek v. Cook County officers Electoral Bd.

Court of Appeals of Illinois, First District, Fifth Division

March 7, 2014

KENNETH P. ZUREK and JOSEPH J. PONZIO, Petitioners-Appellants,
v.
THE COOK COUNTY OFFICERS ELECTORAL BOARD, and its Members David Orr, Individually and as its Chairman, ANITA ALVAREZ, Individually and as Member, and DOROTHY BROWN, Individually and as Member, and BARRETT F. PEDERSON, Candidate for the Office of TownshipCommitteeman Leyden Township Democratic Party, Respondents-Appellees

As Corrected March 14, 2014.

As Corrected.

Appeal from the Circuit Court of Cook County. No. 14 COEL 6, 14 COEL 7, cons. The Honorable Alfred Paul, Judge, presiding.

Affirmed.

SYLLABUS

The respondent electoral board properly found that respondent candidate for a position as a Democratic township committeeman substantially complied with the requirements for being on the ballot, notwithstanding the fact that he used the wrong form for his " Statement of Candidacy" and did not state that he was " a qualified primary voter of the Democratic Party," since he did state that he was " a qualified voter," " a Democratic candidate for election to the office of Township Committeeman" and " legally qualified *** to hold such office" ; therefore, the validity of his nominating papers was upheld.

For PONZIO, APPELLANT: John D. Spina, Spina McGuire & Okal, P.C., Elmwood Park, IL.

For APPELLEES: Burton S. Odelson, Odelson & Sterk, Ltd., Evergreen Park, IL; James P. Nally, James P. Nally, P.C., Chicago, IL.

PRESIDING JUSTICE GORDON delivered the judgment of the court, with opinion. Justices Palmer and Taylor concurred in the judgment and opinion.

OPINION

GORDON, PRESIDING JUSTICE

Page 250

[¶1] The issue before us is whether the current Democratic committeeman of an Illinois township should be barred from reelection and his name stricken from the ballot in the upcoming March 2014 primary election because he concededly used the wrong form for his " Statement of Candidacy" and thus failed to state, as he was statutorily required to do, that he was " a qualified primary voter of the Democratic Party" (10 ILCS 5/7-10 (West 2012)). He stated instead that he was: (1) " a qualified voter," (2) " a Democratic candidate for election to the office of Township Committeeman of Leyden Township, Illinois," and (3) " legally qualified *** to hold such office."

[¶2] The Cook County Officers Electoral Board found that he was nonetheless in substantial compliance with the Election Code (See 10 ILCS 5/1-1 et seq . (West 2010)) and voted unanimously to place his name on ...


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