7 replies on “Skokie mayor responds to efforts to reform village’s electoral system”

  1. If Skokie’s trustees are elected at-large, which seems to be the case, then you have what voting rights activists call “multi-member representation.” Ever since the first Congressional elections in 1778, it has been known that in multi-member representation, one demographic (race, party, geographic) elects ALL of those members. You won’t find one voting rights activist who condones multi-member representation. Supreme Court justices, from Earl Warren to Ruth Bader Ginsburg, excoriated multi-member representation at every opportunity. Skokie’s citizens should take the right step and expunge it from their politics–and not even allow “hybrid” representation. Where I live in Maryland, experience has shown that “hybrid” does not resolve the voting rights violation entailed in multi-member representation.

  2. According to Mayor Van Dusen, the “the current system ensures racial and minority representation as well as equal services throughout the village.” Note that he does not say it provides “equal representation.” Currently, the majority of the Skokie Village Board is White. The majority are men. There are no Latino elected officials, and until recently, there was not a Black elected official on the Board. The majority of Village Board members live Northeast Skokie, and there are no Village Board members living in Southeast or Northwest Skokie. That isn’t equal representation. Skokie residents deserve a system in which all groups have equal representation, and in which all candidates have equal access to the electoral system, regardless of whether they are backed by a political party.

  3. The mayor is spot on. Take a look at Chicago and Evanston as samples of cities that are divided up into multiple wards. Look at all the good public services that Skokie has to offer. All one needs to do to find out how desirable Skokie is by taking a look at the real estate market, you have houses with multiple offers and people wanting to live here. If it was such a badly run village why do people want to move here? I grew up under communism and some of the ideas floating around by the these so-called community groups are borderline socialist and communist ideas.

    1. I am ready for reform in the way that Skokie elects its officials. Every single resident is better off when elections are fully open and competitive. Let’s remember Billy Haido, who almost was elected, until his tweets were discovered. https://patch.com/illinois/skokie/caucus-party-drops-candidate-over-sexist-misogynistic-posts. And despite public opinion, our board was tone deaf to the demands of Skokie residents to nix the Carvana deal and went ahead with it, ignoring public opinion. And confusing? Evanston residents do not seem to be confused by the ward system—why would Skokie residents be “confused.” We deserve to have a more responsive, open and competitive system of government. The Carvana issue alone is evidence of how difficult it is to be heard in this current, old-fashioned system. The reforms proposed are not borderline communism, unless that term has been redefined recently.

  4. I have lived in Skokie for nearly 20 years. Does our style of municipal government give every resident of Skokie exactly what he or she wants, no it doesn’t but no government can or should be dictated to by individuals. The Caucus Party was created to be inclusive, to bring the political spectrum together in a way that removes assumptions about how its members will approach issues so that our local government is effective. I can’t tell you who in our Village government is a Democrat or a Republican, and in this era of political fear and hate-mongering, I glad for that. What I can tell you is they work together. As a resident of this Village, I don’t have to put a yard sign on my front lawn or give money to a candidate for the Board in order to get my garbage picked up or my street plowed. I don’t have to worry that someone’s nephew is being paid with my tax dollars and not showing up to work. We are a community, not communities pitted against each other for resources. If you have an issue with how things are done, make an appointment to meet with the Village Manager or the Mayor or the Board. Go to a zoning meeting or attend the appearance commission meetings. Or do the one thing that most people don’t bother to do, vote. Our elected officials work for us. Had the Mayor or the Board received thousands of phone calls and emails opposed to the car tower they would have voted differently. It’s not rocket science. Obviously, there are people still upset by the decision, but committees, op-eds, Facebook groups and press conferences don’t vote, people do and the people of this quirky little village have voted for a system of government that works for us.

    1. “Had the Mayor or the Board received thousands of phone calls and emails opposed to the car tower they would have voted differently.” This is exactly what happened. I suggest viewing the Village Board meetings regarding Carvana as a starting point. This Skokie resident and voter does not feel Skokie Caucus works for us. Nor, apparently, do many other residents.

  5. All fine and good, MAYOR, but it doesn’t explain how Skokie ended up with a massive, glass CAR VENDING MACHINE that nobody wanted. Think about that. People are seeking REFORM when garbage like THAT is shoved down their throats.

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