Saturday, January 11, 2014

Will the names Sanchez and Hardiman become more memorable in defeat?

Anybody who thinks that “The Law” is absolute, crystal clear and well-thought out in its intent need only look at some of the ballot challenges now taking place to realize the error of their ways.

SANCHEZ: Is he free yet?
In all honesty, I don’t know how the Cook County Elections Board will rule with regard to the challenge to the county board candidacy of Al Sanchez.

JUST AS I’M really curious to see if Gov. Pat Quinn becomes the luckiest politician on Planet Earth. After losing all of his potentially-serious challengers for the primary, he may also have his token Democrat challenger removed as well.

But none of it is so clear-cut that people can say it is a done deal that these people don’t have any business on the ballot for the March 18 primary elections.

Anybody who tries to claim that these candidates didn’t follow the rules, thereby bringing their fate upon themselves, is being disingenuous. They’re just lucky that the county and Illinois State Board of Elections both had officials whose interpretation of the law matchup up perfectly with their own partisan political leanings.

If anything, I’m inclined to think that Sanchez – the one-time city Streets & Sanitation commissioner who got into legal trouble for the way in which he tried to make himself a Latino political powerbroker – is doomed. Although his attorneys would argue otherwise about his campaign against incumbent Commissioner Stanley Moore, D-Chicago.

SANCHEZ DID JUST over two years in federal prison facilities for the way in which he used his part of the city payroll to reward his political workers. People like Illinois House Speaker Michael Madigan, D-Chicago, also have their allied political workers in government jobs, but they are subtle than was Sanchez.

He’s now free, but he remains on probation.

Which is what has the people who don’t want Sanchez on the ballot arguing that he hasn’t completed the sentence for his felony conviction. As though they’d think any higher of him once his probation is complete.

HARDIMAN: No running mate?
Not likely!

IT ALWAYS WAS my understanding that a sentence includes the probationary period – because in theory he could be found in violation and returned to prison.

But it’s going to be up to the county Elections Board to figure this one out, because there isn’t much in the way of precedent in terms of a political candidate having to figure out when his prison time is complete.

Wouldn’t it be a hoot if the name “Al Sanchez” wound up going into the political history books more for determining when felons could resume trying to have a political life – rather than for his stint as head of the now-defunct Hispanic Democratic Organization.

The campaign of Tio Hardiman – who’s putting up the token Democratic primary bid against Quinn – is more bizarre. His lieutenant governor running mate is Brunell Donald, an attorney in Chicago.

IT SEEMS SHE’S not registered to vote at her current address (she recently moved). Which means the address she gave for herself on her nominating petitions does not match up to where she really lives.

Does this make her vulnerable to attack? Can she be booted from the ballot? Or is this excessive nitpicking?

It may be. But the real question is what this does to Hardiman, since the elections process was changed beginning this election cycle to require gubernatorial candidates to name a running mate to run with them in the primary portion of the election cycle.

There is NO precedent for what happens if a candidate for governor does not have a running mate in place on the ballot. The courts are definitely going to wind up having to resolve this case.

WHICH WILL BE rather ironic, since the name “Tio Hardiman” was supposed to be ultimately forgettable and irrelevant to this election cycle.

Instead, his case could wind up will definitely become a first, even bigger than that of Sanchez. They could matter more in defeat than if they had actually been capable of getting themselves elected to office.


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