Representative Theresa Mah, Hilario Dominguez Call for Investigation into Reported Ballot Theft in Chinatown

Lawndale News Chicago's Bilingual Newspaper - Local News

Lawndale News Chicago's Bilingual Newspaper - Local News

By: Ashmar Mandou

State Representative Theresa Mah and 25th Ward candidate Hilario Dominguez called on the Board of Elections to investigate reports of ballot theft among Chinatown seniors. These t reports come less than a week before Election Day, providing limited time to ensure hundreds of eligible seniors can exercise their right to vote. “To see a political candidate take advantage of Chinese seniors in this way is unacceptable,” said Representative Theresa Mah. “I am deeply concerned that hundreds of seniors in The Chinatown Elderly Apartments and similar facilities throughout the area have been disenfranchised from their right to vote, and I urge the Board of Elections to investigate immediately.”

A senior in the Chinatown Elderly Apartments reported that two supporters of Byron Sigcho-Lopez went door to door checking IDs last month. Allegedly, residents were not told at the time was that these two individuals were using the information to apply for mail-in ballots. This past Wednesday, after the ballots had arrived, one of the same individuals went door to door to collect ballots that had not been completed. One senior found this strange and challenged the woman, who stated that the senior was required to vote for Sigcho-Lopez because she had previously accepted a meal, and that she did not need to fill out the ballot herself because someone else would take care of it. Still suspicious, the senior asked for a receipt for her ballot, including the ballot number of the candidate who would receive her vote, and the contact information for the individual collecting the blank ballots.

“The fact that any campaign would intentionally manipulate the votes of vulnerable senior citizens is troubling,” said Hilario Dominguez. “But for this to come from a candidate who has attempted to brand himself as a progressive, it is outright appalling. I’m calling on Byron to denounce this behavior, and work with the Board of Elections to return these incomplete ballots to the voters.” This follows a series of reports from various residents of the same senior building as well as another residential complex in Chinatown. In one instance in December, it appears that nearly 100 seniors were brought to Phoenix Restaurant for a free meal in return for an agreement for vote for Sigcho-Lopez, allegedly. Earlier this week, seniors at the Archer Courts apartment complex reported that they were called to attend a gathering organized by the Sigcho-Lopez campaign in the complex’s activity room, where they were given goody bags in exchange for their vote.

Receipt translation: Chinatown Elderly Apartments. This letter is a ballot. You have already voted; you do not need to vote again. [Editor’s note: Personal information was omitted from the translation to protect the privacy of the individual]

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