The Illinois Supreme Court, in an unsigned order Monday, denied a request by the DuPage County Clerk to set aside a local judge’s ruling instructing the clerk how to verify the authenticity of late mail ballots .

The ruling comes Tuesday as the last day’s ballots are mailed out on or before Election Day, November 8. Verified and Counted — With a close race between GOP State Representative Dean Mazzocchi and Democratic challenger Jane Ladisch Douglas, both in Elmhurst hang in the balance.

As of Monday, unofficial vote totals showed Douglass had a 343-vote lead over Mazocchi in the district, which includes a portion of western Cook County, by 21,864 to 21,521.

At issue in the case is how late, mail-in ballots are being verified and counted in DuPage County.

Mazzocchi, an attorney and an assistant leader of the House GOP, alleged that DuPage County Clerk Jean Kaczmarek improperly forged signatures on mail-in ballots by using vote-by-mail applications instead of voter registration signatures on file in the clerk’s office. Was verifying from

Mazocchi sued to challenge the signature-verification method, and last week DuPage County Circuit Judge James Orrell sided with Mazocchi and ordered Kaczmarek to certify the validity of mail-in ballots using the voter registration signature on file in his office. ordered and banned clerk’s office Using signatures from vote by mail applications to verify mailed ballot signatures.

“The use of a vote by mail ballot application to qualify a signature on a vote by mail ballot would be an obvious way to commit ballot fraud,” Orrell said in his order.

Orel’s order also told Kaczmarek that if the voter’s signature on the mail-in ballot does not match the on-file voter registration signature, the ballot must be separated, marked “rejected” and Necessary procedures must be followed to contact the voter to confirm the same. Authenticity.

Kaczmarek filed for an emergency supervisory order from the Illinois Supreme Court. In overturning Orrell’s decision, the court did not interfere with the vote count, saying that Mazzocchi’s actions were premature as he would have an opportunity to contest after all ballots had been counted.

Kaczmarek’s filing warned that Orel’s action “invites political agents of any political association to file unauthorized lawsuits amid the counting of votes in ongoing elections, in hopes that an Illinois court will assume the role of an election official.” Will accept and order the counting of votes in the manner they think is right.

Monday’s decision by the Supreme Court means Orel’s order remains in place. Majochi has the ability to contest the election result.

In a court filing, Mazzocchi said judicial intervention was “necessary to ensure that the election code will be followed and only valid votes will be counted.”

Absent court involvement, she argued, “the clerk’s illegal practices would go unchecked and election results would be tabulated in violation of the law.”

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