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September 29, 2022

Madison County Electoral Board Forced To Redo Hearings Due To Open Meetings Violations –

By John Kraft & Kirk Allen

On March 29, 2022

Madison County, IL. (ECWd) –

The Madison County Electoral Board held its objection hearings last week but did not publish the meeting agenda at least 48 hours in advance of the hearing.

This rendered every decision made during the hearing as invalid.

The Board then announced it would hold another hearing for the purposes of hearing the objections, which will be on March 31, 2022, at 1 p.m. where they will hear all evidence for or against the objections and render their decisions. They will not entertain any of the information presented at the previous improper hearing.

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7 Comments
  • Publius
    Posted at 21:40h, 29 March

    Thankfully Doug Hulme was there to video record it. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M7SHkx1VjWA&ab_channel=MadisonTaxpayer

  • Kathiann
    Posted at 09:31h, 30 March

    And these hearings have specific timeline restrictions on them….such as being held so many data after the objection is filed, etc. There’s not much time to mess it up like this. Wow. But objections don’t come along that often according to our county clerk. Clerks might need to be ready because objections will probably increase over time rather than stay rare.

  • Kathiann
    Posted at 09:32h, 30 March

    So many DAYS, not data. Sorry.

  • RIPLUMBER
    Posted at 14:42h, 30 March

    This is the Madison County Electoral Board hearing on March 24th, 2022 chaired by Chris Slusser and Debbie Ming-Mendoza. Key points…this is a public meeting so here is what was missing that is required by the Illinois Open Meetings Act.

    1. No agenda – Required by OMA
    2. No public comment – Required by OMA
    3. No public vote to adopt rules – Required by OMA
    4. Secret deliberations – Not allowed by OMA/unconstitutional
    5. Secret votes – Not allowed by OMA/unconstitutional

    Remember the meeting has a court reporter in the meeting so the record is extremely important to preserve, so why does Chris Slusser deliberate in secret then take a secret vote?

    Personally I have been to many public meetings that intentionally disregarded the law, but I have never seen the “secret huddle” before.

    What do you think? Is this transparency? Is this good public policy?

  • Publius
    Posted at 14:42h, 30 March

    Kathiann- That’s interesting. What happens if they are outside the window for having them because they are redoing them? By the way I’m curious how this happened. If one of the candidates has friends on the board and didn’t like the outcome the objection can the board just say we want a redo without being ordered by a court ?

    • kathiann
      Posted at 10:19h, 01 April

      Publius, I do not know the answer to the timeline question. I would assume they would just follow it out to get it done regardless. There was a notice published here in White County about our objection hearing and a few members of the public were in attendance. It was all done proper and in order.

  • Dwight Kay
    Posted at 16:09h, 30 March

    The entire hearing was improper and gave the appearance of a well staged hearing. How many meetings will be needed for the hearing board to get it right? The Hearing Board was comprised of Ray Wesley who is also the Chairman of the Republican Party in Madison County, the States Attorney, the County Clerk Debra Ming-Mendoza, and a staff lawyer from the States Attorney’s office. This supposedly august panel of Republicans also limited the examination period to 15 minutes of direct examination for each challenge. The tone for the meeting was set when Madison County Treasure Chris Slusser was sworn in to speak for himself against candidate petition challenges. He rapidly read an inaudible statement that could
    not be challenged properly. Is it any wonder the general public questions the election process? I vote and for me, enough is enough.

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