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Greens submit names for ballot access in Illinois

Carbondale lawyer Rich Whitney is the Green Party candidate for Governor
Carbondale lawyer Rich Whitney is the Green Party candidate for Governor

By Amanda Vinicky, IL Public Radio

Springfield, Ill – Members of the Green Party say they made political history Monday when they filed nominating petitions with the Illinois State Board of Elections in Springfield.

They say for the first time those forms should put a full third party slate of statewide candidates on the November ballot.

In Illinois, Republicans and Democrats need to gather signatures from 5,000 registered voters to get on the ballot for statewide office. But candidates representing other parties need at least 25,000.

Rich Whiteny, the Green Party candidate for governor, says Illinois has one of the toughest ballot access laws in the U.S., but he says his party submitted more than the 25,000 to assure access.

Greens two years ago met the 25,000 mark, only to be kicked off the ballot when the board of elections ruled too many of the signatures were invalid.

Whitney says he doesn't know how many signatures were collected this time around, but that the party's done its own checks and crossed out bad signatures. He expects the party will meet the criteria this time.

And he says Democrats and Republicans should not challenge the petitions in an effort to keep Green Party candidates from running against them. He says the Green Party's collected so many signatures it shows voters want more choice, and any challenge would hurt democracy and cost taxpayers money.

The Greens running for statewide office are:

Rich Whitney for Governor
Julie Samuels for Lt. Governor
David Black for Attorney General
Dan Rodriguez-Schlorff for Treasurer
Karen Young for Secretary of State
Alicia Snyder for Comptroller