After weeks of collecting signatures for my petition to run for McHenry County Board District 2, today's the day for filing! Any candidate who is in line at the County Clerk's office before 8 am is considered to have filed at 8 a.m. and is entered into a lottery for ballot position! Since there are expected to be 3 of us on the primary ballot, I want to to be in the lottery for ballot placement. Conventional wisdom says the first ballot position is best, the last ballot position is second best and the middle ballot position is the least desirable.
My plan was to arrive in Woodstock before 7:30 and that was a smart move. It's snowing this morning and the roads are a little slick. I arrived just after 7:30 and was in line with plenty of time to spare. The Northwest Herald has a reporter and cameraman there. I'm photographed dozens of times and interviewed.
UPDATE: My picture makes the cover of the Northwest Herald and my interview is included in the related the news article. One "small" problem-- they misspell my name (Pavelka instead of Pavelko). Oh well. Two out of three ain't bad!
It's lottery day, the day when the McHenry County Clerk conducts a lottery to determine ballot position for any race on the June 28, 2022 primary ballot with more than one candidate who filed simultaneously. Because there are 3 candidates on the Democratic ballot for McHenry County Board District 2 and all 3 were in line before 8 am, we are deemed to have filed simultaneously.
I have no idea what to expect at the lottery.
Conventional wisdom says it is favorable to be listed first on the ballot. The next best position is last on the ballot. And the worst, again, according to conventional wisdom, is a middle position.
I envision a scene from a National Convention, with music, crowds and banners and reporters milling about the lobby of the McHenry County Administrative Building! Boy, was I wrong! When I arrive just minutes before the announced 10 am start time, I am disappointed to see about 5 people there. Where is everybody? A minute or so before 10 am, the clerk and two of his staff emerge from the office. The county clerk expresses surprise at the large crowd (????)
He hands out a sheet of paper with 5 different races listed (including mine). For each race, simultaneous filers are listed in alphabetical order. Some races have two candidates (designated as A and B) and a few (like mine) have 3 (A, B and C). The clerk explains that he will conduct one lottery that will apply to all 5 of these races. He shows all 7 or 8 people now in the room that he has 3 pieces of paper that he puts in a hat, one marked A, the second is B and the third is C.
The clerk's assistant draws the first slip-- A.
Each candidate with an A before his or her name ill be first on the ballot. Not me! The drawings continue- B is drawn second, followed by C. All races will appear on the ballot in alphabetical order! The entire lottery is completed by 10:04 am!
Even though conventional wisdom says my ballot placement, in the middle, is unfavorable, I am confident I can win from here!
As I drove home, I started thinking: what are the odds that the lottery would end in ABC order? Well, I am no statistician, but I realize that the only combinations that could be drawn are : ABC; ACB; BAC; BCA; CAB; and CBA. So the chances of any 1 of these combinations is 1 in 6.
It's surprising how much is happening in the campaign! A great deal of computer work is needed to identify voters in District 2! Product design is also critical because the vendors are so busy this time of year. Yard signs will be available soon, and IMHO, they look great! The website gets more content every day. Now that we can accept donations, either through Stripe.com or ActBlue, they are coming in regularly!
For valid reasons, election campaign committees are highly regulated. Last Thursday marked the end of Q1 2022, so we'll be working to complete a financial disclosure filing period.
As the weather improves (as it sometimes does this time of year), we'll be getting out to more and more neighborhoods to meet the voters and introduce our campaign!
We'll post updates here as the campaign progresses!
Earth Day 2022! I grew up in Wisconsin and remember the very first Earth Day. It was 1970. Earth Day was the brainchild of our US Senator, Gaylord Nelson. I was in Catholic grade school at the time and we drew posters in art class and even toured the neighborhood that afternoon, picking up trash and observing air pollution from the nearby industrial plants (I think the nuns just wanted an excuse to use up an hour or more of school time without having to teach).
A lot has changed since 1970! People are much more aware of the environment. Leaded gasoline is gone. Cars have become more fuel efficient. And the auto industry is moving more and more toward EVs. But so much more work remains! When you see the wildfires burning across the country (even in Minnesota) and other extreme weather, you must admit that climate change is a real and existential threat.
So much more work remains to preserve the beauty of this Blue Marble we call Earth. Closer to home, McHenry County is such an ecological gem! Take part in events planned by the McHenry County Conservation District: https://www.mccdistrict.org/news_detail_T6_R131.php. More importantly, please take a moment today to consider what you can do to save the planet-- recycle; plant a tree; walk or bicycle on short errands! I even found this article online from an Orlando TV station that offers some very easy ideas anyone can implement to make the environment better: https://www.wsls.com/news/local/2022/04/22/easy-daily-habits-to-save-our-planet/
Happy Earth Day!
I was excited and pleased to learn this past weekend that AFCSME Council 31 has endorsed our campaign! My volunteers and staff worked hard to secure this endorsement. I appreciate everyone's efforts and I am honored to receive this endorsement!
I was devastated to read in the Northwest Herald that Chairman Buehler had pulled a proclamation off the May agenda that would have proclaimed June to be Pride month in McHenry County and would have seen the Pride flag fly at McHenry County government buildings. Chairman Buehler argued that a recent U.S. Supreme Court decision, Shurtleff v. Boston, required the board to table such resolutions until they had a comprehensive policy! Chairman Buehler is very wrong! I will try to speak during public comments at tomorrow night's meeting to set the record straight!
I was the first speaker at the county board meeting during public comments and I spoke in favor of the Pride month and flag proclamation that Chairman Buehler had pulled from the agenda. I explained that the decision Chairman Buehler had relied upon, Shurtleff v. Boston, distinguished an "open forum" (which is how Boston handled flags and flagpole ceremonies) from government speech (which is how McHenry County had always proceeded to consider Pride month and the Pride flag). Boston allowed any and every group to sign up for designated time slots for a flagpole ceremony and flag raising of its choice. Boston did not review or approve the ceremony content or the chosen flag. Boston ran into trouble when they suddenly decided to exclude a religious organization. The Supreme Court said that Boston had created a public forum by allowing any and all groups to use the flagpole and preventing the religious group from participating violated their free speech rights. The Court distinguished that from government speech, which is what McHenry County does when it adopts a Pride month proclamation. In government speech, government can decide what causes to support and doing so does not violate the rights of others who were not chosen. Chairman Buehler was therefore wrong to hide behind that Supreme Court decision.
The partisan crowd seemed to appreciate my comments and even gasped when I said Chairman Buehler was wrong. I hope the board finds a way to salvage the Pride month! LGBTQ rights are human rights!
I have heard that Chairman Buehler wilted under the pressure of so many comments, attacking him for pulling the Pride month proclamation. There will be a special board meeting on June 6 to take up the issue! I hope my comments contributed in some way to his relenting!
Please attend the June 6 special board meeting! The LGBTQ community needs to know they are loved and respected by all of McHenry County!
Tomorrow is Memorial Day and several followers on this website have asked if I will be walking in any area Memorial Day parades as some politicians will. For me, Memorial Day is a day to remember our war heroes who gave the ultimate sacrifice for our country. I will attend the Crystal Lake programs on Memorial Day as a grateful citizen and not as a campaigning politician. There will be other parades in which to march.
Of the many members of my family who served this country in the military, on Memorial Day my thoughts go to an uncle I never knew-- Stephen E. Pavelko. He died February 17, 1944 as a Merchant Seaman in the US Merchant Marines. He was on the advance team at Anzio Beachhead. The Axis forces desperately sought to prevent the Allied Forces from gaining a foothold there and bombed the advance team as it tried to build landing and staging facilities at that site. My uncle was a fatality of those bombings. He is buried at the Sicily Rome American Cemetery.
It is on my bucket list to visit his grave someday-- to lay some flowers there, pray and reflect on the freedoms I enjoy because of the sacrifices he and so many others gave.
Today, I had the distinct pleasure of walking in the Pride parade in Woodstock with my fellow Democrats! I am amazed at the crowds! They were huge! What a great depiction this parade is to the idea that Love is Love!
I cannot wait to attend next year!
I've been busy on the campaign and have neglected my posts here. I came on my website this morning to thank my volunteers, contributors and supporters, and to make a Get Out The Vote plea. Then I heard the news-- the Trump Supreme Court has struck down Roe v. Wade!
Devastation is too soft to describe my reaction to this Court's decisions of yesterday and today! Utter annihilation of the human rights that have been taken! Conservatism in America means reverence for guns over public a and interference with woman's ability to make her own health decisions! I am sick to my stomach. I have not read either decision yet, though I am sure the decision overturning Roe v. Wade is very consistent with the draft opinion leaked earlier this year.
Many of the voters in District 2 that I have met favor women's reproductive rights and effective control control. My advice to all-- be VERY active the next few election cycles! On reproductive rights, support organizations that support pro-choice candidates. I donated to Personal PAC today (https://www.personalpac.org/). Whether you want to increase the Supreme Court to 13 justices, support federal legislation or other course of action to solidify reproductive rights for women, vote! Every election! Every office! And vote Democratic!
On gun control, the US senate passed a bill yesterday even though 2/3 of the Republicans voted no! This bill must pass the House and be signed into law! Call your Member of Congress and insist on a yes vote on the House version of the Bill! While this legislation is a start, stronger legislation is needed and possible if we elect more Democrats! Again, be very active, especially in the next several election cycles, voting Democratic in all races! Just like reproductive rights, support gun control lobbies to counter the NRA! There are many fine groups nationally. In Illinois, I highly recommend supporting GPAC Illinois (https://gpacillinois.com/).
This evening, my wife and I joined the NOW protest against today's Supreme Court decision on Route 14 in Crystal Lake. I've added the photo here.
Ironically, my rant over all of these comes full circle to what I intended to post today-- VOTE! VOTE DEMOCRATIC up and down the ballot! If you talked with me as I walked the District, volunteered on my campaign, contributed to my campaign or pledged your vote to me, I thank you! Bottom line-- primary election day is Tuesday! Let's use it to send a Blue wave message!
Copyright © 2022 Citizens for Thomas Pavelko- All Rights Reserved.
Authorized and paid for by citizens for thomas pavelko. A copy of our report, filed with the Illinois State board of elections, is (or will be) available on the board's official website (www.elections.il.gov) or for purchase from the illinois state board of elections, springfield, illinois.
AFSCME Council 31 has endorsed the campaign of Thomas Pavelko for McHenry County Board!