Illinois: Federal Judge Considers Senate Special Election

Posted June 30, 2010 at 6:18pm

A federal judge on Wednesday was considering the next move in a lawsuit demanding that the state hold two Senate elections this year.

Two weeks ago, an appeals court found merit to arguments that appointed Sen. Roland Burris (D) was supposed to serve only until an election was held to fill the unexpired portion of President Barack Obama’s seat in the Senate.

Still unsettled is how Illinois would go about holding special party primaries and a special general election.

“Election officials are shell-shocked,” Chicago Board of Election Commissioners spokesman James Allen told the Chicago Sun-Times on Tuesday. “It’s nuts to spend $30 million for a special primary for someone to serve 30 days over the holidays.”

U.S. District Judge John Grady was scheduled to hear arguments Wednesday afternoon.

“The November double-election for the same office creates some minor issues, but nothing compared to the problems and cost of cramming in a special primary in September,” Allen said.