Governor's Race Has A Third Contender; Judge Keeps Libertarians On Ballot

Sep 18, 2014

The Libertarian slate faced several obstacles to make it on the ballot; here, candidates hold a press conference to show how many more signatures they had to turn in to the state elections board, compared with Democrats and Republicans. The party's candidate for governor, Chad Grimm, is just to the left of the podium.
Credit Amanda Vinicky

Democrats succeeded in getting a slate of Green Party candidates wiped from the November ballot. But the Libertarian Party had enough signatures to withstand a Republican challenge before the State Board of Elections. And now the Libertarians have withstood a court challenge as well.

Sometimes you can actually hear the smile in someone's voice. I didn't actually see Chad Grimm's face upon hearing the news that he'll remain on the ballot as the Libertarian nominee for governor. But, he sure sounded happy.

"Everything's great. To the best of my knowledge, from the phone call that I just got, the judge isn't even hearing the case," Grimm said, over the phone.

A Republican attorney, John Fogarty, had tried to get the Libertarians knocked out of the race. He argued there were problems with the individuals who'd circulated the petitions Libertarians submitted to get on the ballot. Fogarty argued that would make the signatures they’d collected invalid.

But in just a two-page order, a Sangamon County judge found Republicans did not have evidence of fraud, and denied hearing the case.

Political observers say Grimm could pull votes away from Republican Bruce Rauner in what's expected to be a neck-and-neck race with Democratic Gov. Pat Quinn.

“I want to get rid of the wasted vote syndrome. There's three people in this race, it's not a wasted vote," Grimm said. "Any one of us can win."

He says fundraising, and being taken seriously as he campaigns, will be easier now that his spot on the ballot is assured.