Rauner pick for water treatment board could lead to court fight

The unusual write-in battle for a seat on an obscure water treatment board has become even more strange after Gov. Bruce Rauner quietly made an appointment that could force the low-profile election into court.

Just days after last week's primary, Rauner appointed Republican David Walsh to fill the Metropolitan Water Reclamation District seat that became vacant after the death of Commissioner Tim Bradford.

Republicans and Democrats now disagree on whether Walsh will serve beyond the November election. Walsh took his oath of office last Friday - three days after the primary - to replace Bradford, who died Dec. 1.

Walsh and Rauner contend Walsh will serve through the end of 2020, when Bradford's term was to end. But Democrats argue Walsh will be replaced in December, when the winner of the November election is sworn in.

Bradford died three days before the Dec. 4 candidate-filing deadline. With little time for candidates to gather signatures to get on the ballot, the Cook County Clerk and State's Attorney's Office opted for a write-in election. No Republican ran.

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