27 January 2011

Illinois Supreme Court Decides Rahm Emanuel Case

Unanimous decision: Emanuel Can Run
See decision below
Rahm Emanuel "Take your fucking tampon out and tell me what you have to say."

The Deciders Decided!
Watch this spot for news of the Rahm Emanuel Chicago residency qualification case before the Illinois Supreme Court.  Court watchers have been anticipating a decision "at any moment" since 26 January 2011.

WLS-AM 890 talk-show host Roe Conn's "informed" guess is that the Illinois Supreme Court allows Rahm Emanuel to run. Roe was right!

Docket No. 111773. (link to full document)
WALTER P. MAKSYM  et al., Appellees, v. THE BOARD OF
al., Appellants.
Opinion filed January 27, 2011.
JUSTICE THOMAS delivered the judgment of the court, with
Chief Justice Kilbride and Justices Garman, Karmeier, and Theis
concurred in the judgment and opinion.
Justices Freeman and Burke specially concurred, with opinion.
The petitioners, Walter P. Maksym, Jr., and Thomas L.
McMahon, filed written objections to the candidacy of the respondent,
Rahm Emanuel (the candidate), who seeks to be a candidate for
mayor of the City of Chicago in the municipal general election to be
held on February 22, 2011. After an evidentiary hearing, the Board of
Election Commissioners of the City of Chicago (the Board) dismissed
the objections and ruled that the candidate was entitled to have his
name included on the ballot as a mayoral candidate. The petitioners
sought judicial review in the circuit court of Cook County, which
confirmed the decision of the Board. The petitioners appealed, and the
appellate court reversed the circuit court’s judgment, set aside the-2-
Board’s decision, and ordered that the candidate’s name be excluded
(or, if necessary, removed) from the ballot for Chicago’s February 22,
2011, mayoral election. No. 1–11–0033. We allowed the candidate’s
petition for leave to appeal. Ill. S. Ct. R. 315 (eff. Feb. 26, 2010).
Although the parties engaged in an extensive evidentiary hearing
prior to the Board’s decision, the pertinent  facts are largely
undisputed on appeal. The appellate court summarized and adopted
the Board’s factual findings. In doing so, the court concluded that the
factual findings were not against the manifest weight of the evidence.
We agree with the appellate court that the Board’s factual findings
were not against the manifest weight of the evidence. See Cinkus v.
Village of Stickney Municipal Officers Electoral Board, 228 Ill. 2d
200, 210 (2008). Accordingly, we set forth the facts largely as
summarized in the appellate court opinion.
The candidate was born in Chicago and, in December 1998,
purchased a Chicago home (the Hermitage House), which he still
owns. The candidate lived with his family in that home from 1998
through January 2009. On January 2, 2009, the candidate, who had up
to then served as a member of the United States House  of
Representatives elected from the district that included the Hermitage
House, resigned his office in order to serve in Washington, D.C., as
Chief of Staff to the President of the United States. After traveling to
Washington, D.C., he and his spouse purchased additional land
adjoining their Chicago property.
From January through May 2009, the candidate lived in an “in-law
apartment” in Washington, D.C., while his family remained in the
Hermitage House. From June 2009 until October 1, 2010, the
candidate, and his  family, lived in a Washington, D.C., house (the
Woodley House) that was leased for the term spanning June 1, 2009,
through June 30, 2011. The family received their mail at the Woodley
House and moved most of their clothes and personal belongings to
Washington, D.C. They did, however, leave behind at the Hermitage
House several larger household items, including televisions, a piano,
and a bed, as well as several personal possessions such as family
heirlooms and books. The candidate’s Hermitage House was leased
to another family for the term of September 1, 2009, through June 30,
At all relevant times, including the time he was in Washington,-3-
D.C., the candidate continued to pay property taxes for the Hermitage
House, continued to hold an Illinois driver’s license listing the
Hermitage House as his address, continued to list the Hermitage
House address on his personal checks, and continued to vote with the
Hermitage House as his registered voting address. He did, however,
pay income tax in 2009 and 2010 to both Washington, D.C., and
On October 1, 2010, the candidate resigned his position of Chief
of Staff to the President of the United States and entered into a lease
to live in an apartment located on Milwaukee Avenue in Chicago from
October 1, 2010, through June 30, 2011. He has lived in that
apartment since October 1, 2010. In  his testimony, the candidate
explained that he had always expected to serve as Chief of Staff to the
President for approximately 18 to 24 months before returning to live
in the Hermitage House.
From these facts, the Board concluded that the candidate met the
qualification for candidacy, contained in subsection 3.1–10–5(a) of the
Illinois Municipal Code (Municipal Code) (65 ILCS 5/3.1–10–5(a)
(West 2008)), mandating that he had “resided in” Chicago for the one
year preceding the February 22, 2011, mayoral election. The Board
noted that the objectors and candidate agreed that “residence” in this
context means “permanent abode,” and that two elements are required
for a permanent abode: (1) physical presence; and (2) an intent to
remain there as a permanent abode. The Board cited case law
establishing that, once a permanent abode is established, residence
continues until abandoned. The Board concluded that the objectors
had failed to establish that the candidate abandoned his residence,
basing its conclusion on the evidence that the candidate maintained
significant contacts with Chicago, intended to return to Chicago and
to the Hermitage House, and had lived in Washington, D.C., solely for
the purpose of working for the President. Among the findings made
by the Board were the following:
–“The preponderance of this evidence establishes that the
Candidate never formed an intention to terminate his residence
in Chicago; never formed an intention to establish  his
residence in Washington, D.C., or any place other than
Chicago; and never formed  an intention to change his
–“The preponderance of this evidence further establishes
that throughout the relevant period in 2009 and 2010 the
Candidate maintained significant contacts in and with the City
of Chicago and the State of Illinois, including continuing
ownership of real estate; continuing ownership of valuable
personal property of kinds that a reasonable person would
store at the place he deemed to be his permanent residence
and to which he planned to return.”
–“The preponderance of this evidence, particularly
including the coincidental terms of the leases and extensions
of leases of the Hermitage House and the Woodley House
compel the inference that the Candidate and his spouse
intended to return to occupy the Hermitage House and abide
–“The preponderance of this evidence establishes that the
Candidate intended his presence in Washington, D.C., solely
for the purpose of permitting him to discharge what he
perceived to be a duty to serve the United States in the
capacity of the Chief of Staff to the President of the United
–“The weight of the evidence shows that the Objectors
failed to bear their burdens of proof and persuasion that the
Candidate intended, in 2009 or 2010, to effect any change in
his residence or to be anything other than a resident of
Chicago for electoral purposes.”

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