CHICAGO - Activist William Calloway says he has enough signatures to get on the ballot in the election for the representative for Illinois' 25th District, and says those objecting to him don't have the legal standing to do so.
"If you don't have legal grounds to examine or search my petitions, I'm not about to let you," Calloway said.
Calloway is one of nine candidates vying for the state representative seat in the 25th District, on Chicago's southeast side.
He went before the Chicago Board of Election Commissioners Tuesday to fight back against two women who have challenged his signatures in an attempt to kick him off the ballot.
Sable Collins listed an apartment on East 74th Street as her home address. But her mail has built up in the mailbox, and Calloway claims she does not live there anymore. The law requires that people who file objections must live in the district where they are challenging a candidate.
"I have testimony from her landlord and her property manager saying they have not seen or spoke with Ms. Collins in the past several months, that they have not received any rent from her, and that they also have filed an eviction against her as well," Calloway told the election commissioners.
Collins called ABC7 Eyewitness News later and said she does live at that apartment. She admitted her cousin is one of the candidates running against Calloway, but said she filed the petitions on her own behalf.
Angelsine Toney, another person challenging Calloway, lives on East 68th Street. Calloway is fighting her objections on the grounds that the Board of Elections website indicates she lives in the 26th District.
Toney admitted she is working on behalf of another candidate. But when ABC7 asked which candidate she's representing, she said, "I'm not going to tell you that."
The commissioners denied Calloway's request to have Collins subpoenaed to prove where she lives, leaving him frustrated.
"I like to believe in our democratic process here, but as we know, Chicago politics is a very, very unique place, I'll say that," he said.
Calloway said he collected 1,200 signatures and he only needs 500 to get on the ballot. He seemed confident that he would prevail in the end and have enough valid signatures to stay in the race.
Calloway also filed his own objections to the signatures of four of the other candidates running against him.