Sunday, December 9, 2007

"Pattern of Fraud" Evidence Disallowed; Terry Link Remains on Ballot

I wanted to wait until I had more complete details before posting on the results of the Link petition challenge hearing yesterday, but the public is clamoring for the scoop, so here is what I know:

As has been reported to me, the Link petition challenge was held yesterday before the Administrative Law Judge (ALJ), a fancy title for 'hearing officer.' Pete Couvall, the Democratic vice-chairman, and the person who notarized all of Link's petitions, was subpoenaed by Jerry Johnson's attorney, as were Jerry Knight and Kenneth Davison, who were the primary Link petition circulators.

Kenneth Davison testified that he forged some signatures himself and went door to door and asked some people to sign for everyone who lived at the house. Some of Davison's signatures were rejected and some were allowed.

The bigger issue, however, is that Johnson's attorney was not allowed to present any evidence of an overall "pattern of fraud" because that was not specifically alleged in the original petition challenge document itself. Thus, Johnson's attorney was not allowed to argue that Davison's and Knight's petitions should all be thrown out based on the argument that they were inherently tainted and unreliable as a group.

Knight took the stand and denied he forged any signatures, and stated that he lived at the address he gave on the petitions (which is required for petition circulators). Couvall testified that he picked up Knight on several occasions from that address. However, the landlord for that address also testified, and he stated that Knight had not lived there since sometime in 2006. Knight's petitions were ultimately allowed.

The end result is that Link remains on the ballot at this stage.

I understand that Johnson's attorney intends to appeal to the full Election Board. I have not spoken to him myself, and I am no election law expert, but if the ALJ's ruling was that "pattern of fraud" was not allowed to be argued because it was not in the original complaint, I would think that the main issue on appeal is that Johnson should have been allowed to amend the complaint to add the 'pattern of fraud' argument, based on the discovery of all of the forgeries and dead folks, many or most of which came to light after the petition challenge was filed. Election challenges, however, have their own set of rules, so I could be dead wrong on that.

I also understand that because the 'pattern of fraud' argument was disallowed, no affidavits of people who stated that they did not sign the petition (and which had been collected by Johnson's team) were allowed into evidence, and none of the death certificates of the dead folks whose names appeared on the petitions were allowed either. That, I do not understand, since you would think that even if such evidence were not allowed to support a 'pattern of fraud' argument, they would at least be evidence of a specific challenge to a specific signature. So, there may be some missing facts here, but I will be providing updates as I get more information.

16 comments:

Democorrupt said...

Wouldn't let the evidence in? One goof testifies he forged the signatures? The other goof didn't live there? Didn't he take an oath swearing he lived there!

Calling State's Attorney Waller! Calling State's Attorney Waller!

File your charges now before State's Attorney Dick Devine steps in and decides to sweep it under the rug!

Publia said...

I don't know what agency this was in front of, but there is a wide variety in capability of ALJ's generally, and by the time you get to the circuit court, a will to overturn . . . Then again, lawyers who practice there will know what to do--speedy is good.

Louis T. Johnson said...

TA:

Anybody notice that Dan Seals stuck it openly to Terry Link and Angelo Kyle yesterday? It was clear at the meeting that Dan is no fan of Angelo.

Team America said...

LTJ- I noticed, because I read the News-Scum, but not sure how many other people caught on. I agree that Seals stumping for Washington is to some degree thumbing his nose at Link (since Link is backing Kyle), but only in a very indirect way. I think Seals doesn't have the guts to stand up to Link. Did Seals say anything specific at the Washington event to prove me wrong? I'd be interested to know.

Anonymous said...

http://www.dailyherald.com/story/?id=92668&src=3

Team America said...

Thanks again, Russ.

So far the Daily Herald has not published the story behind the story, but I am optimistic that the big scandal will be printed once all of this comes to a head.

Anonymous said...

A newspaper can only print what it knows to be fact, confirmed from proper sources.

Team America said...

Agreed Anon 10:59- that's why I'm not being overly critical of the Herald at this point... I believe they are still doing their research and will blow the lid off this scandal at the proper moment, when all of their facts have been confirmed.

Anonymous said...

I read the Daily Herald article and I am amazed the hearing examiner recommended Link remain on the ballot and yet refused to discuss the "specifics". I have been informed of some "specifics" from the proceedings on Saturday that I would like to share with readers.

Jerry Knight, the MAIN circulator that was "missing" since the objection was filed, was served a subpoena at Democrat Party Hdqtrs in Waukegan.

Jerry Knight, the MAIN circulator was arrested in January in Winthrop Harbor and provided an address of 1004 Sheridan Road in Winthrop Harbor.

Jerry Knight, the MAIN circulator was arrested November 7, 2007 in Zion and provided an address in the city of Chicago.

Jerry Knight, the MAIN circulator claimed under oath on Saturday that he resided at 838 Hickory in Waukegan (which is the Oxford House) for the two months during which he circulated petitions on behalf of Senator Link.

What Jerry Knight did not expect was that the President of the Oxford House at 838 Hickory in Waukegan, would be present at the hearing to dispute his claim of residency, provide an affidavit stating that Jerry Knight had not lived there since 2006, and the President of the Oxford House really would be the one to know who lives there and who doesn't.

Further, has anyone looked at the driver's license of Jerry Knight? Pete Couvall should have, especially since he notarized every page on the petitions submitted by Knight and claimed under oath, to have picked up Knight at the 838 Hickory address. I was informed that Couvall did pick up Knight the morning of Saturday, December 8, and brought him to the hearing.

According to the SBOE website, I found the following:
II. Objections to Circulators

A. Circulator did not Sign Petition Sheet

If the circulator’s statement is unsigned, the objection shall be sustained, and all the signatures on the petition sheet shall be invalidated.

B. Ineligible Circulator

The fact that a circulator is not 18 years of age, or a United States Citizen or a resident at the place he or she states in the affidavit may be proved by any competent evidence. Invalid circulators may not circulate petitions and a petition page so circulated may violate two separate requirements of the Election Code. A false oath is a separate violation. The use of more than one ineligible circulator may constitute a pattern of fraud, providing a basis for disqualifying the entire petition.

I am not an attorney but this seems pretty darn simple. One of the circulators "came clean" on Saturday and admitted he forged signatures and had not resided at the address on the petitions for YEARS - that's right - YEARS, and Jerry Knight's testimony vs. that of the President of Oxford House is clear - who would you believe?

According to the SBOE's own rules, as stated above, "The fact that a circulator is not 18 years of age, or a United States Citizen or a resident at the place he or she states in the affidavit may be proved by any competent evidence. Invalid circulators may not circulate petitions and a petition page so circulated may violate two separate requirements of the Election Code. A false oath is a separate violation. The use of more than one ineligible circulator may constitute a pattern of fraud, providing a basis for disqualifying the entire petition."

Looks simple to me - your thoughts?

Anonymous said...

TA, might this not be a story for some of the main TV Channels.....Carol Marin perhaps? Maybe MaryAnn Ahern? I know that all the facts need to be checked, but what Anon 11:15 a.m has just detailed seems pretty clear cut to take to some of those high powered investigative reporters. I'm sure that Michael Waller is looking into all of this, but I'd like to see the power of the big TV stations get on this one, NOW.

Anonymous said...

Anon 11:35
Agreed - if anyone has contacts at the press they should get this story out - Link is the 2nd in charge under Emil, and look what Emil's gotten away with? If the media does not do investigative reporting and it is left up to state government (controlled by Blago, Emil and Madigan), this will get swept under the carpet - he's got too much clout...

Anonymous said...

Anon 11:56 a.m. One doesn't need access of any kind to just call NBC, ABC, CBS and ask for these reporters. You are right, Link is a high-powered player and this kind of news IS news. That aside, these reporters will dig in and be able to do what none of us can do right now. Timing is everything and the time is right now.

Anonymous said...

In the 30th State Senate District, no Republican filed petitions, and I registered to be a write-in candidate.
I started volunteering for politicians, in 1978, when I lived in Kansas and, at age 11, walked precincts for Nancy Kassebaum, the first time that she was elected to the U.S. Senate. I have a B.A., in political science, from the University of Arkansas. I volunteered at the 1988, 1996, and 2000 Republican National Conventions. I’ve volunteered for seven congressional candidates, including Bob Dornan, Ken Arnold, and David McSweeney. I worked, as a paid campaign employee, for John Cox’s U.S. Senate campaigns, 2001-’02 and 2003 and for Major General John Borling’s (USAF-ret.) U.S. Senate campaign, 2003-’04. I have been a member of the Illinois Center Right Coalition since Apr. 2003. I became a member of the ICRC steering committee in Sept. 2005 and was elected to a two-year term in June 2006. In Aug. 2006, I was elected to be the ICRC secretary and was appointed to be the webmaster. In Jan.-Mar. 2006, I walked seven precincts for Warren Township Supervisor Sue Simpson, for her state senate campaign, and she defeated St. Sen. Geo-Karis, who had been in the legislature for more than 30 years. Since Sept. 2007, I’ve been the volunteer coordinator of Mike Psak's U.S. Senate campaign.
In Apr. 2006, I retired from the navy, with 21 years of service, 11 on active duty (including two years at Great Lakes) and 10 in the reserves. I was stationed near Baghdad, in the Triangle of Death, Sept. 2004-Mar. ’05.
If you want to contact me, please e-mail me at philacollins@yahoo.com. If you know any Republicans who live in that district, which includes Waukegan, Vernon Hills, and most of Buffalo Grove, please ask them to write my name and vote for me. Thanks for your help.

Phil Collins
North Chicago

Anonymous said...

If Couvall is implicated, that could be a huge PR victory for the Kalbfleisch camp. He already got ink in the Pioneer publications once for having been challenged. He'll have a field day if his objector is involved in some sort of crime.

Anonymous said...

Couvall should be implicated.

Couvall notarized each page on behalf of Senator Link.

Couvall stated under oath that he picked up and dropped off Jerry Knight at 838 Hickory Street in Waukegan, the Oxford House.

The President of the Oxford House stated that Jerry Knight did not reside at the Oxford House since 2006.

And, according to a January criminal complaint filed against Jerry Knight in Winthrop Harbor (DUI, possession of crack pipe, etc.) Jerry Knight provided an address of 1004 Sheridan Road in Winthrop Harbor.

And, according to a November criminal complaint filed against Jerry Knight in Zion (criminal trespass to real property) Jerry Knight provided an address of 259 W. 117th Street in Chicago.

It's simple if you believe in the blind eye of justice...it is this reader's opinion, the petitions circulated by Jerry Knight be thrown out due to a pattern of fraud - they contain names of deceased individuals, names of individuals that have signed affidavits stating their names were forged.

In addition, folks checking the Knight petitions have noticed names in alpha order according to phone book records...more to follow...

i could be potus said...

RICO anyone?

http://www.ricoact.com/ricoact/nutshell.asp

Might be time to call Patrick Fitzgerald as well.