Candidate should get credit for consolidation

 
Updated 8/12/2018 1:44 PM

The editorial on July 23 regarding the consolidation of the DuPage Election Commission and the county clerk's office failed to mention the perseverance of Jean Kaczmarek, Democratic candidate for DuPage County clerk.

Kaczmarek has been arguing for this consolidation for 13 years, long before Dan Cronin said anything about it.

 

For years, she has attended meetings, researched and impacted positive changes at the commission. Kaczmarek found numerous problems there and argued for changes addressing a lack of accountability, transparency, ethics and compliance with the law. She advocated against Liberty Systems, the company that caused the ender card problem during the primary election.

In December 2013, Kaczmarek filed campaign paperwork to run for DuPage County clerk and announced her platform - to return elections back to the clerk's office. Eleven days later, the county board chairman formed a "working group" to review the possibility of the clerk's office sharing responsibilities with the Election Commission. That group never met.

The county board chairman's first public effort to bring consolidation of the two offices wasn't years ago. It was January 2017. His "hybrid model" would have allowed the county board chairman to maintain appointment power by increasing his appointees from three to five, and continue to pay those commissioners all too well. It failed.

Cronin then filed a bill that was similar to what Kaczmarek has been proposing for 13 years. Only now Cronin wants it to look like it was his idea. Not so.

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Cronin used the photo op to promote himself and the current county clerk as if the November election were a fait accompli.

The two candidates should debate so that the voters can determine who they think is better equipped to handle next year's change in the county clerk's responsibilities.

Bob Peickert, Chair

Democratic Party of DuPage County

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