Election board officer OKs Parnarauskis’ signatures

By Kathleen Foody

Illinois State Board of Elections hearing officer David Herman recommended Monday that Joe Parnarauskis, Social Equality Party candidate for the 52nd District, be placed on the November 7th ballot, Parnarauskis said.

Herman ruled that the Democratic party’s challenge of 44 signature sheets collected by Parnarauskis’ campaign was unfounded based on a previous court ruling.

Parnarauskis will now face the last hurdle in his fight to be on the November ballot when the Board meets on Thursday.

“The State Board of Elections is not an unbiased body,” Parnarauskis said. “They are an appointed body of four Republicans and four Democrats. We’re hoping they will rule justly, but they could rule against us and disenfranchise the 5,000 people who are looking for a new voice.”

Parnarauskis said he had campaigned for the State Senate seat throughout this dispute, focusing on issues like the war in Iraq, capitalism and preserving basic Constitutional rights.

Parnarauskis’ eligibility has also been a recent issue for the two mainstream candidates. Democrat Mike Frerichs recently challenged Republican opponent Judy Myers to a series of 10 debates.

Myers attacked Frerichs for not inviting Parnarauskis to the debates.

Frerichs said in an earlier interview that any candidate who is on the ballot is welcome to participate in his challenge.