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Illinois Senate Republicans and County Clerks ask for transparency in election process

SPRINGFIELD, Ill.- Illinois Senate Republicans and county clerks from across the state are pushing legislation creating more transparency in elections.

Senate Bill 1326 could require election judges to complete uniform training requirements provided by the State Board of Elections. Sen. Sally Turner (R-Lincoln) said the Illinois State Board of Elections already has election judge training. However, it differs from county to county.

“Unfortunately, that differentiation can lead to differences in how election judges preform their duties in different parts of the state,” said Turner.

Tazewell County Clerk John Ackerman also feels it’s important to have a uniform election process.

“What’s taking place in Tazewell County is the same that takes place in Peoria County, Sangamon County, Champaign,” said Ackerman. “People can intrust that when they go from one county to the next, the processes are exactly the same and that everything’s being done to the best practices that are possible.”

“Voters can have assurance”

The bill could also require election judges to complete written affidavits if they dealt with delayed polling results. Sangamon County Clerk Don Gray explained local clerks would make that information available to the public on their websites. He said this could provide even more transparency to voters.

“Nothing provides an erosion of one’s confidence if there’s uncertainty in time of why results are not being reported in a timely fashion,” Gray said. “The more we can communicate, the better we will all be.”

Sen. Sue Rezin (R-Morris) noted the bill also would audit vote by mail ballots that arrive after election day.

“Voters can have assurance that our expanded vote by mail process is correctly and efficiently working thanks to the expansion of vote by mail auditing,” Rezin said. “These are ideas that every Illinoisan should support.”

This proposal still needs to go through the Senate Executive Committee before moving to the floor.

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Ali Rasper

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