Crawford County residents who wanted to get a jump on the election season and cast their ballots Thursday will just have to wait.
Thursday is the statutory start of early voting for the March 20 primary in Illinois. However, ballots are not available because of pending court proceedings at the state level, Crawford County Clerk Fayrene Wright told the Daily News.
"I anticipate the challenges to a candidate's placement on the ballot should be resolved by Feb. 13 and the official ballot and voting equipment prepared shortly thereafter," Wright said.
The delay is because State Rep. Scott Drury is appealing a decision by a Cook County judge to remove him from the Democrat primary ballot for attorney general.
At issue is whether Drury's 2017 statement of economic interest is sufficient for his name to appear on the ballot in the primary.
Drury and his lawyers argue his paperwork was filed within a year, as required. The Illinois State Board of Elections voted 5-3 that he should remain on the ballot. So his objectors went to court.
Early voting is tentatively scheduled to begin in Crawford County on Thursday, Feb. 15, at Wright's office in the county annex building. Office hours are 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday.
Applications to vote by mail are still available at the clerk's office or through the county clerk's website at www.crawfordcountycentral.com.
Besides attorney general, votes will help select candidates for a plethora of offices such as governor, state representative, county clerk, county board and sheriff. They will also elect precinct committeemen during the primary.