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posted: 1/8/2014 6:53 PM

Hearing officers recommend who's on the ballot

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  • Arlene Hickory

    Arlene Hickory

  • Manju Goel

    Manju Goel

and Marty Hobe

The primary election opponent for Democratic U.S. Rep. Brad Schneider and two Republicans hoping to run for U.S. Senate could see their campaigns end Thursday if the Illinois Board of Elections agrees they don't qualify to be on the ballot.

Officers who have reviewed objections to candidates across the state also recommend the board should allow Gov. Pat Quinn and Republican congressional candidate Manju Goel of Aurora to remain.

The board is set to make final decisions today about who can be on the March 18 primary ballot.

A hearing officer has recommended that retired nurse Arlene Hickory of Lake Bluff not be allowed on the ballot to run for Congress in the 10th District. She turned in enough signatures to run, but some were invalidated because some people weren't registered to vote or otherwise were ineligible to sign.

In addition, the Republican primary for U.S. Senate could be a two-man race between Doug Truax of Downers Grove and state Sen. Jim Oberweis of Sugar Grove because recommendations suggest Armen Alvarez of Chicago and Will Lee of Rockton shouldn't be on the ballot.

They both failed to turn in the 5,000 petition signatures needed. Lee recorded 4,019 and Alvarez only had 2,402, according to recommendations to the board.

If a candidate's petition signatures are challenged, hearing officers hear both sides of the story and recommend whether the board should allow a candidate onto the primary ballot. The board often follows that advice.

Other candidates are poised to survive challenges to their campaigns.

Goel is running a primary campaign against Larry Kaifesh of Carpentersville for the chance to take on U.S. Rep. Tammy Duckworth in the 8th District.

Some of Goel's petitions came under scrutiny because a notary didn't hand-sign some pages, using a stamp with his signature instead, which is against the rules.

Still, a hearing officer recommended giving Goel the benefit of the doubt.

"Unless a pattern of fraud is evident, notary questions are often resolved in favor of the candidate," the recommendation reads.

Gov. Pat Quinn's petition was challenged by opponent Tio Hardiman, who claimed 5,400 out of the governor's 10,000 signatures were invalid. But enough were found valid that the incumbent governor was recommended to stay on the ballot.

Bob Galhotra of Chicago and state Sen. Don Harmon of Oak Park, opposing one another for the 39th Illinois Senate District seat, also both were recommended to stay in the race.

Republican Beth Goncher of Aurora, bidding to replace state Rep. Kay Hatcher of Yorkville, is also likely to survive a challenge, based on recommendations.

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