(The following was originally published in The State Journal-Register.)
PEORIA — Several familiar central Illinois faces may not make it on election ballots after all, thanks to a series of challenges to their third party candidacies for statewide offices.
Libertarian governor candidate Chad Grimm of Peoria, running mate Alexander Cummings of West Peoria and Green Party secretary of state candidate Sheldon Schafer of Peoria could be booted from the ballot along with the rest of their nominees for constitutional office thanks to the objections filed by Democratic and Republican party loyalists.
Both campaigns are trying to make an issue of it, both in the court of public opinion and, in the case of the Green Party, in a federal courtroom where they sued this week challenging a number of issues in the petitioning process and the review by the Illinois State Board of Elections.
Schafer — a two-time Green Party candidate for Congress in the 18th District — said the problem has grown with changes in the election code, “each year making it harder and harder so that fewer and fewer people can participate in the political arena.”