The Illinois Supreme Court is allowing Hal Patton to stay on the ballot in the 56th state Senate district.
According to a decision Thursday, the court denied Patton’s request for a direct appeal to the Supreme Court of a Cook County judge’s decision that kicked the Edwardsville mayor off the ballot, but the court did order a stay of the decision and ordered an appellate court to expedite consideration of Patton’s case.
The order of a stay of the Cook County decision allows Patton’s name to appear on the March 20 primary ballot.
“I’m thankful that the Supreme Court weighed in today and ordered my name back on the ballot,” Patton said.
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Patton, a Republican, is seeking the Republican nomination to run for the 56th state Senate seat, which is currently held by state Sen. Bill Haine, D-Alton. Haine is not running for re-election. Madison County Assistant State’s Attorney Rachelle Aud Crowe is seeking the Democratic nomination to run for the seat.
Even though Patton is a Republican, he signed the re-election petitions of state Rep. Katie Stuart, an Edwardsville Democrat. State law prohibits a person from running for the nomination of one party after signing the election petition of a candidate from another party. An objection was filed to Patton’s candidacy, but the State Board of Elections did not take action on the objection. The case was eventually brought to a Cook County judge.
“This shouldn’t be a partisan issue. Every voter in this district should be offended that Mike Madigan is helping my opponent by using Cook County judges to remove me from the ballot,” Patton said. “It’s my hope that Rachelle Aud Crowe puts an end to this challenge once and for all, so we can begin focusing on the issues important to our communities and the future of Illinois.”
Crowe said she is focusing on her own campaign.
“I’m prepared to run a strong campaign focused on the issues facing our district no matter who my opponent is,” Crowe said.
Timeline of events
- Dec. 11: An objection was filed to Hal Patton’s candidacy in the 56th state Senate race.
- Jan. 11: The State Board of Elections voted 4-3 on a motion to sustain the objection to Patton’s name being on the ballot, which means the board took no official action because it takes five votes to enact a motion. So Patton was on the ballot.
- Jan. 30: Cook County Circuit Court Judge Alfred Paul issued a ruling to sustain the objection, so Patton was off the ballot. The Illinois First District Appellate Court later denied Patton’s motion for a stay of the circuit court decision.
- Thursday: The Supreme Court ordered the appellate court to stay the circuit court decision allowing Patton to remain on the ballot pending the appellate court’s decision.