2nd Congressional District Special Election Could Cost Millions of Dollars
Hoping to cut down on costs, Cook County Clerk David Orr will ask a judge to allow the election to coincide with the 2013 municipal elections.
Cook County Clerk David Orr is hoping to schedule the special elections to fill the 2nd Congressional District seat to coincide with the suburban municipal elections next February and April.
"Synchronizing the election dates will save at least $1 million, reduce voter confusion, enable all military voters to cast ballots and possibly boost turnout," Orr said in a statement released Wednesday after Jesse Jackson Jr.'s resignation.
Orr and the clerks in Chicago, Will County and Kankakee county will need to coordinate efforts and seek a judge's permission to move the election.
The election calendar includes a Feb. 26 primary and an April 9 general for the local consolidated elections.
Chicago Board of Elections spokesman Jim Allen told Sun-Times Media reporter Fitzpatrick: “We’re still crunching the numbers, but it is reasonable to expect that we could have approximately $1 million in costs between the special primary and special election,” Allen said.
Orr said separate 2nd District elections could cost Cook County $1 million, too, if it's not rescheduled.
Gov. Pat Quinn, by law, has five days to schedule a special election. In a statement, Quinn said: "This election will be carried out in a manner that is fair to the electorate and as economical as possible for the taxpayers."
The 2nd Congressional District is comprised of 263 precincts in suburban Cook County, 170 precincts in Chicago, 85 precincts in Kankakee County and 27 precincts in Will County. Approximately 428,000 registered voters reside in the district, of which more than half live in suburban Cook County.
Potential candidates who have expressed interest in the seat or are privately mulling a bid include State Sen. Toi Hutchinson, former state reps Robin Kelly and David Miller, attorney Sam Adam Jr., former congresswoman Debbie Halvorson and former Cook County President Todd Stroger.