GOP precinct committeemen hopefuls: Start your petitions
It's signature-gathering time for anyone interested in becoming a Republican precinct committeeman, a two-year post that is performed on a volunteer-only basis, according to Illinois Family Action.
The job of committeeman is to help the GOP grow and work on producing the largest amounts of Republican votes in upcoming elections. Many people begin their political careers in this role. It is likely that a precinct committeeman will be the only party official most people will ever meet face-to-face because of their involvement in the community.
With the exception of Cook County, a committeeman can be elected in all Illinois counties. Cook County does not elect committeemen.
Candidates must be 18 and registered to vote in their precinct.
The next step is take on the primary petition. Anyone interested has until Dec. 4 to gather the required 10 signatures -- 20 are preferred -- from registered voters to get on the ballot. Signatures have to be from Republican Party voters of the precinct.
Nominating papers must be completed between Nov. 27 and Dec. 4 at the local county clerk's office. These need to contain the committeeman petition, a statement of candidacy and an optional loyalty oath.
If no one runs against a potential committeeman, one may be appointed at the county chairman’s discretion.
“According to Illinois law, no appointment for Precinct Committeemen may be made between the Primary Election and the 30th day after the Primary Election," the Illinois Family Action website said. "This one month ‘blackout period’ is simply to deter any game playing that might occur in advance of the GOP county conventions held once every two years, in the month after the Primary Election. This ‘blackout period’ has already expired for this year and it won’t come up again until immediately after the 2016 Primary Election.”
A committeeman's first duty is to help choose a county chairman as part of the county GOP’s central committee. She is also expected to spend at least a few hours in their position each month, especially during election season.
Illinois Family Action is part of the Illinois Family Institute.
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