Case

Collazo v. Illinois State Board of Elections

The Liberty Justice Center is suing the Illinois State Board of Elections for violating the constitutional right to vote by repealing a campaign law mid-election.

The Liberty Justice Center has filed a lawsuit against the Illinois State Board of Elections for violating Illinoisans’ constitutional right to vote by repealing a campaign law mid-election.

Until now, if no one ran in a political party’s primary election, the party itself could nominate (or “slate”) a candidate, if the candidate gathered the required number of petition signatures. On May 3, however, Governor Pritzker signed into law P.A. 103-0586, which repealed that provision, effective immediately—targeting only races for the General Assembly while allowing other offices to continue the slating process.

P.A. 103-0586 was signed into law abruptly in the middle of an election season. It was introduced on May 1, when legislators replaced the entire text of a dormant, existing bill on another subject—Senate Bill 2412, which previously would have amended the Children and Family Services Act—with text that reformed the Illinois Election Code. The House passed the bill the same day. It was passed by the Senate the following day and signed into law as P.A. 103-0586 by the governor on May 3, less than 48 hours after its contents had been introduced.

On May 13, the Liberty Justice Center filed an emergency motion for a temporary restraining order and preliminary injunction against P.A. 103-0586. If granted, the order will block the repeal from taking effect during litigation.

The Liberty Justice Center is representing multiple prospective candidates for the November 2024 general election, whose campaigns would be halted by P.A. 103-0586. Although these candidates began gathering signatures before the repeal was enacted, and before the June 3 deadline for collecting signatures has expired, P.A. 103-0586 prevents them from appearing on the ballot in November.

The Liberty Justice Center’s lawsuit argues that P.A. 103-0586 violates Illinoisans’ right to vote by changing the rules for ballot access in the middle of an election.

“P.A. 103-0586 removed the provisions of the Illinois Election Code that would allow candidates to access the ballot, after the process for filling vacancies on the ballot had begun,” said Jeffrey Schwab, Senior Counsel at the Liberty Justice Center. “Changing these rules in the middle of the process is a blatant infringement on the fundamental constitutional right to vote, which also protects the right of a candidate to appear on the ballot. There’s no reason why these changes could not have waited until the next election cycle. We urge the Court to halt this repeal and allow this election to continue with the laws that were in force when it began.”

Collazo v. Illinois State Board of Elections was filed in the Circuit Court for the Seventh Judicial Circuit, Sangamon County, Illinois, on May 10, 2024.

Attorneys

Jacob Huebert

Jacob Huebert

Jacob Huebert serves as the president of the Liberty Justice Center. He previously served as the Liberty Justice Center’s Director of Litigation. In that role, he successfully litigated cases to protect economic liberty, free speech and other constitutional rights. Jacob and his work have appeared in numerous national media outlets, including the Wall Street JournalNew York Times and Fox News Channel.

Jeffrey Schwab

Jeffrey M. Schwab

Jeffrey M. Schwab is a Senior Counsel at the Liberty Justice Center, where he litigates cases to protect the rights to free speech, economic liberty, private property and other Constitutional rights in both federal and state courts across the country.

James McQuaid

James McQuaid

James McQuaid is a staff attorney at Liberty Justice Center where he assists in cases to protect the rights to free speech, economic liberty, private property, and other Constitutional rights in courts across the country.

Case Press Releases

Case In The News

Cook County Record
May 13, 2024

(Cook County Record)—Saying the law unconstitutionally rewrites the rules of Illinois elections in the middle of the election cycle, a group of prospective Republican General Assembly candidates have become the first to challenge a controversial new “anti-democracy” elections law, rushed through the state legislature by the state’s Democratic supermajority in...

The Center Square
May 13, 2024

(The Center Square)—Candidates hopeful to run for the Illinois General Assembly filed a lawsuit alleging violation of constitutional voting rights resulting from recent changes in the rules for slating candidates to fill vacancies. Leslie Collazo is a plaintiff in the lawsuit filed Friday in Sangamon County Circuit Court. The defendants...

ABOUT

NAME

Collazo v. Illinois State Board of Elections

FILED

May 10, 2024

COURT

Circuit Court for the Seventh Judicial Circuit, Sangamon County

STATUS

Pending

Media

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