Lake Coroner Thomas Rudd asks court to order him back on November ballot
In a last-ditch effort to remain on the November ballot, Lake County Coroner Thomas Rudd has filed court documents asking a judge to reverse an election panel's ruling that bars him from seeking re-election as an independent candidate.
Through his attorneys, Rudd filed an official petition late Tuesday for judicial review of the Lake County Electoral Board's decision to remove him from the general election ballot.
The petition claims the board's July 13 decision negating his nomination as an independent candidate should be reversed because keeping him off the ballot violates his rights under the U.S. and Illinois constitutions.
The three-member electoral board ruled that Rudd's name cannot appear on the general election ballot as an independent candidate because he initially filed to run as a Democrat in the March primary.
Rudd, a first-term incumbent from Lake Forest, withdrew from the primary and as a Democratic precinct committeeman after his nomination papers were objected to by would-be Democratic challenger Michael P. Donnenwirth, and Waukegan resident Keith E. Turner.
Rudd then turned in nomination petitions in June to run as an independent, but Donnenwirth and Turner again filed formal objections to the paperwork. They argued that Rudd should not be allowed to run as a candidate for a political party and as an independent in the same election cycle.
While the law is clear on changing party affiliations after a primary loss, "it doesn't say whether or not you can run after withdrawing," Rudd said previously.
The three-member Lake County Electoral Board ruled unanimously against Rudd, leading to this week's filing.
A hearing on Rudd's petition is scheduled to take place Thursday.