Petitions can be gathered from that day through November 2nd of this year. That's the last day to file petitions.
New Republican leaders are needed from top to bottom in Illinois - but today we're focusing on the office of Republican Precinct Committeeman. There are more of these posts than any other in Illinois - by far. It's also the smallest and simplest race to run. It's a volunteer office with a two-year term.
Every county other than Cook elects Precinct Committeemen. (Cook County has a unique structure that we'll talk about in the coming days. New blood is seriously needed there too as everyone knows.)
Literally thousands of Republican Precinct Committeeman offices are vacant around the state. This is just one more failure under Andy McKenna's tenure as State Party Chair.
The Old Guard won't encourage you to run for Precinct Committeeman - much less share with you the simple procedure. But we will. We recognize that the Illinois Republican Party will never be rebuilt without new leaders and energy, and having committed Precinct Committeemen is vital.
Since Republican Precinct Committeeman is a party office (as opposed to a public office) the Primary on February 2nd next year IS the election for this office. The Democrats obviously elect their own Precinct Committeemen on that day.
You'll find the Form of Petition that's directly from the State Board of Elections (it's very user friendly and can be filled out online and printed).
Only 10 valid signatures from registered voters in your precinct are needed to get on the ballot for Precinct Committeeman (you probably want to get at least two or three times that number to be safe).
More details are on the website, but it's very easy and inexpensive to run for Precinct Committeeman. It's also the perfect place for dedicated Republicans to begin their political involvement.
You'll also find a link for the 2010 Candidate's Guide published by the State Board of Elections. You should definitely read the sections that cover running for Precinct Committeeman.
Of course if you already have a good Republican Precinct Committeeman you can help that person get reelected. Contact her or him and volunteer to get involved in the local party.
But if you don't have a Republican Precinct Committeeman - or if the one you have is doing a poor job - run yourself. Or at a minimum - help find a good Republican to run. There is a fair amount of time before the November 2nd deadline, but let's get started.
If you have any questions after reviewing the website and materials, feel free to contact me at [email protected].
Doug Ibendahl is a Chicago Attorney and a former General Counsel of the Illinois Republican Party. He is Co-Founder of Republican Young Professionals (RYP).