ROCKFORD–Christina Tobin, Founder and chief executive of Free & Equal Elections, was one of two keynote speakers at the packed Rockford Tea Party Town Hall on February 20, 2010. She spoke on the topic of ballot access; what event organizers dubbed “the forgotten freedom.”

In the above photos, Jim Tobin introduces his daughter, Christina Tobin; and later, Christina addresses 250 concerned taxpayers.

Illinois currently requires all candidates running for statewide office to collect signatures to get on the ballot in primary elections. Meanwhile, nearly two-thirds of the states require only a filing fee in such instances. Free & Equal Election Law Attorney Andrew Spiegel is drafting a legislative proposal that would replace all Illinois signature requirements with modest filing fees. This would apply to all candidates, regardless of political affiliation.
“Replacing signature requirements and the unfair challenge system with uniform filing fees is the only way to institute free and equal elections in Illinois, while saving taxpayers between $5 and $10 million a year,” Tobin said.
“The state’s rigged signature-objection procedure makes a mockery of the notion that Illinois holds free and fair elections. It’s also an insensible misuse of millions of taxpayer dollars that go towards legal fees, court costs, employee salaries and more.”
“This should not be some repressive, extreme regime—this is the United States,” Tobin said. “The American people expect their country to be the example of freedom and fairness for the rest of the world.”
View a list of all the states that require only a filing fee for primary ballot access in statewide elections