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Kanye West, Leonard Peltier And Others File For The Fall Ballot In Illinois

Libertarian VP Candidate Spike Cohen speaking at Illinois State Capitol.
Bill Wheelhouse
Libertarian VP Candidate Spike Cohen speaking at Illinois State Capitol.
Libertarian VP Candidate Spike Cohen speaking at Illinois State Capitol.
Credit Bill Wheelhouse
Libertarian VP Candidate Spike Cohen speaking at Illinois State Capitol.

Rapper Kanye West was among those submitting petitions for the fall ballot Illinois on the final day for independent and third party candidates to file.   

West said he is running for president. But he has missed the deadline to file in several states. While he was on time in Illinois, filing does not guarantee a spot on the ballot.  Petitions can be challenged for the number of signatures and their vailidity.  West did not have a vice presidential candidate file with him.  

Another well known name among those filing is imprisoned political activist Leonard Peltier.  He is a vice-presidential candidate on a third party ticket. Peltier is serving a life sentence for the killings of two FBI agents on an Indian reservation in 1975.

The Illinois Libertarian Party and other third parties are fielding more candidates in legislative races this year.

A judge eased signature requirements for third parties this year due to the COVID-19 outbreak.   That made it much easier for the Libertarian candidates running for the legislature to get on the ballot. Steve Suess, the party's state chairman, said that should send a message to the two major parties.

“That given a level playing field with Democrats and Republicans, Libertarians will run for office," he said.

"And in November we’ll prove that Libertarians can be competitive in these state wide elections and can win if given those same opportunities that the two parties possess.” 

More than 10 Libertarians are running either for a legislative or a congressional seat in Illinois, along with the offices of President and U-S Senate. The Green Party also has several running for state legislative posts.

Suess would like to see laws changed to make it easier for third party candidates to get on the ballot in the future.

In addition to the two major party candidates for President, at least four other political parties have filed paperwork to be on the ballot in Illinois. 

Libertarian Vice-Presidential Candidate “Spike” Cohen made a stop in Springfield as the the party filed petitions for its candidates. Cohen is the running mate of Jo Jorgenson.  Cohen says Republicans and Democrats have a stranglehold on power.   

“There are two things that the republicrats agree upon. Everyday is a great day to screw over the American people and no one else should be able to  try to break their system they created of exclusive control of government,” he said.

Along with the Libertarians, other third party candidates for the Presidency and Vice-Presidency include:

Independent - Kanye West - filed with no running mate.

Green Party -Howie Hawkins and Angela Walker.

Party for Socialism and Liberation- Gloria La Riva and Leonard Peltier

American Solidarity Party - Brian Carroll  and Amar Patel

Constitution Party - William Alan Mohr and Dan Blankenship

In addition to major party candidates for the U-S Senate there are others who have filed their petitions including Libertarian Danny Malouf, Chad Koppie with the Constitution Party, Willie Wilson filed as a candidate with the Willie Wilson party and David Black representing the Green Party.

Tuesday is the first day that people can file objections to the ballot filings.

Its possible there could be challenges to the third party candidates, so they are not yet guaranteed a spot on the ballot.

Copyright 2020 NPR Illinois | 91.9 UIS