Objections against two Gurnee board candidates dismissed

Updated 1/10/2019 5:23 PM
  • Don Wilson

    Don Wilson

  • Jamie Seaton

    Jamie Seaton

  • Michael Jacobs

    Michael Jacobs

Objections to two candidates running for Gurnee village board were dismissed by a small election committee, leaving eight candidates competing for three seats.

Don Wilson, who served on the Gurnee village board from 2013 to 2017, filed objection paperwork against Jamie Seaton, a first-time candidate, and current Trustee Michael Jacobs, arguing that neither collected enough valid signatures. To get on the ballot, candidates need to collect signatures from 139 registered voters who live in Gurnee.

But after reviewing the evidence brought by Wilson and the candidates, the Gurnee Electoral Board -- made up of Mayor Kristina Kovarik, trustee Jeanne Balmes and Village Clerk Andy Harris -- ruled in favor of Jacobs and Seaton Tuesday night.

Kovarik said objections concerning whether a signature belonged to someone who was registered to vote or a Gurnee resident were easy to rule on. The more difficult task was comparing the collected signatures

"That was a judgment call," said Kovarik, adding she figured many signatures were messier than usual because they were signing their name on a clipboard. "As long as it was close we'd overrule (the objection) but a few we sustained."

Seaton said last week she believed Wilson, who is the president of the Warren Township Republican Organization, targeted her and Jacobs because they weren't Republicans.

When asked whether he thought the commission ruled correctly on the signatures, all Wilson would say is that he'd like to meet and show the signatures.

"All I want is people to be legal and to have done the process correctly running for office," Wilson said.

Jacobs said he didn't begrudge Wilson and added that he felt the process went off without a hitch.

"I think some people are afraid to acknowledge they aren't registered voters," Jacobs said. "In those few instances those signatures should accurately be stricken and they were."

To support their cases, Jacobs and Seaton obtained signed affidavits from some people whose signatures Wilson questioned.

Seaton said she was thrilled with the ruling. She said some of the signatures were just squiggles and she didn't object to those being thrown out, but the vast majority looked good.

Also running for the three village board seats are incumbents Greg Garner and Cheryl G. Ross along with Joshua S. Amann, Matthew Robert Duray, Ryan Horath and Quin O'Brien.

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