The Chicago Board of Election Commisioners, on March 12, decided in favor of 33rd Ward Ald. Deb Mell in her bid to keep her post for another term. But Mell's challenger, Tim Meegan, has said that he will continue to press ahead with a lawsuit accusing Mell's organization of unscrupulous election-day tactics, DNAinfo reported.
The decision affirmed tallies released March 10 that said Mell had won 50.21 percent of the vote, with 4,103 out of 8,171 votes cast. Meegan, a Roosevelt High School teacher, had 2,779 votes, or 34.01 percent, while a second challenger, Annisa Wanat, had 1,289 votes, or 15.78 percent.
That means for the moment that Mell has received more votes than necessary to prevent a runoff election. But Meegan's lawyer, Richard Means, said that their campaign is pressing ahead with a lawsuit, filed March 3, accusing Mell's campaign of a number of illegal dealings. The allegations include having a polling location used as pick-up location for Mell signs; Dick Mell, the candidate's father, being stationed inside polling places to garner support for his daughter; and improper handling of ballots by Mell's poll-watchers.
Meegan's attorneys have requested an expedited hearing, so the matter can be decided in advance of the April 7 election. The lawsuit asks for a full recount.
In a letter posted to Twitter March 12, Mell said that she was "I am honored and excited to continue to serve as … alderman," adding, "I look forward to or ongoing work in the 33rd Ward to provide safer neighborhoods, create a more diverse economy, and improve our schools by building stronger relationships with teachers, parents, children and other stakeholders in the community."
DNAinfo's story is at www.dnainfo.com/chicago/20150312/albany-park/ald-mell-wins-33rd-ward-race-election-board-says.