Paper Clip Court-one rule for me, another for thee

Norridge Improvement Party did not seem to follow same “binding” rules they accuse others of violating

The Norridge Improvement Party (NIP)’s objection against the three trustee petitions and term limits seems to have had alot of discussion in Norridge.

Binder clips

Even beyond Norridge – it found its way into a Chicago Tribune editorial, and the widely circulated Sunday edition on Feb 14th.

The article gets to the heart of the matter: how ridiculous it is to be arguing over paper clips for 9 hours.

It actuality, it was over 12 hours in total for the 3 trustee cases, plus another 9 hours for the referendum.

That makes 21 hours in Paper Clip Court… a “court” where the judges’ party paid for the objector’s attorney. A kangaroo court if there ever was one.

But there may be more than a little bit of hypocrisy over the objection: the NIP paperwork Tannhauser, Avino, Ronstadt, Budnik and Krasinski submitted show no signs of the type of binding they accused the independents of not having.

Specifically, there were no circles at the top of the petitions where such binding would be.

Typically, holes punched in paper show up as dark circles when scanned or copied.

Indeed, those holes are in evidence for Danny Donnelly’s paperwork, and even the NIP paperwork from 2019. There’s no evidence on the 2021 NIP petitions.

Why then, are their documents valid, while those of the independents, and the term limits referendum, are not?

Different standards for incumbents?

One rule for me, another for thee? Do as I say, not as a I do?

If submitting the petitions this way is good enough for the “Improvement Party” – then it should be good enough for independent candidates.

The “Norridge” Improvement Party’s township petitions went a step further – the “Township Improvement Party” (TIP) petitions do not appear to have been even notarized.

Without notarization, the TIP petition circulators could not have legally proven their identity.

A message received from Norwood Park Township Supervisor candidate Tom Lupo claims the petitions were in fact notarized, however, there was no evidence of this on the copy of the petitions received though the state’s Freedom of Information Act.

By these standards, both the “Norridge” and “Township” Improvement Party candidates should be off the ballot.

But they’re not. Why?

Because the system, and the “court” that is supposed to oversee them – is only interested in protecting incumbents.

Because incumbents… will keep doing business as usual. Exactly what they want.

Who still believes in “equal justice under law”, anyway?

This article has been edited to add a comment from Norwood Park Township Supervisor candidate Tom Lupo disputing his slate’s petitions lacking notarization.

Avino in desperate plea for local Democratic support

Frank Avino “working hard” to stop “Donald Trump” supporters running for office, text message says

It may be bitterly cold in Norridge right now, but career politician Frank Avino is feeling the heat.

Frank Avino is attempting to motivate local Democrats

The less-then-popular Avino may be wiped out in what appears to be a very low turnout primary election.

According to official figures, only 136 ballots have been cast as of Feb 12.

The Norwood Park Township Democrats, of which Frank Avino is the nominal leader, sent a text message informing voters that early voting for the Norridge primary is in “full swing”.

The message further opined as to who Avino’s opponents were.

“Donald Trump is gone from the White House” the message continued, “but his supporters are now running for office here in Norridge”.

“Our local Democratic Committeeperson, Frank Avino, is working hard to stop them”.

The message then implored the reader to support Avino and two other Norridge Improvement Party (NIP) candidates Andrew Ronstadt and Debra Budnik.

Notably, candidate Budnik’s name is misspelled “Budnick”.

Voters also report receiving calls and voice mails from individuals identifying themselves as NIP, asking them to call or text them back that they voted for Avino, Ronstadt, and Budnik.

One of the pro-Avino callers certainly sounded like he had a bit too much vino that night.

Chicago 38th ward Democratic takeover

The text message abandons any pretext of non-partisanship, and firmly establishes Avino as a Democratic candidate for Norridge Village Trustee, along with Ronstadt and… “Budnick”.

Pretty dicey sending this kind of message, as it may alienate those who don’t like partisanship in their local elections, especially if this message got out to the general public… oops – it did.

It certainly will alienate conservatives and Trump supporters in Norridge, of which there are many – in 2020, Trump won eight out of nine precincts in Norridge, and lost the one precinct only by 5 votes.

Anthony Beckman in 2020’s 10th Illinois Senate race decisively trounced Martwick in those same precincts.

With numbers like these, Frank Avino’s days as a politician… may also be numbered.

Donnelly enthusiasm

Danny Donnelly, a candidate in the same primary election, has been running circles around the stodgy Avino.

While Avino and the other “Norridge” Improvement Party members were out campaigning, Donnelly was plowing snow.

Donnelly called out the other NIPs over this fact in a “where are your shovels?” campaign graphic.

When asked his opinion of the text messages and phone calls, Donnelly said he didn’t think partisanship should be injected into local elections.

“This is a nonpartisan race,” Donnelly said. “Party sides have absolutely no place within local government.”

“We all live together in a small community and we all have to come together.”

“Democratic Principles”

The text message also included a card for Frank Avino, claiming he is “a real Democrat, committed to Democratic principles”.

Are one of those “Democratic principles” cutting $600,000 from the Norridge police budget, as Daniel Tannhauser and Andy Ronstadt did in 2020?

With crime on the rise throughout Norridge, how’s that turning out?

Or a police “reform” bill that Avino’s political master, Robert Martwick, voted YES on, and is now awaiting the governor’s signature – a bill that will surely hurt law enforcement’s ability to enforce.

The November 2020 election saw full scale rejection of these “Democratic principles” in Norridge.

I already cast my vote early for Danny Donnelly.

I urge all Norridge registered voters to get out and vote in this primary election, to send Frank Avino, and his 38th ward “Democratic Principles”, back to Chicago.

Adam Chudzik, Norridge


Early voting opens for rare Norridge primary

Danny Donnelly challenges Chicago-backed candidates in Norridge Improvement Party primary

Donnelly is challenging the Chicago backed establishment candidates

Early voting at the Norridge Village Hall has started for the Norridge Improvement Party (NIP) primary election.

The election will determine which three of the four NIP candidates will make it to the general election held on April 6: Danny Donnelly, Andrew Ronstadt, Debra Budnik, and Frank Avino.

Early voting hours are Monday through Saturday from 9AM to 5PM and Sundays from 10AM to 4PM, at the Village Hall until Feb 22.

Voters may also request a mail-in ballot, online at the county website, or offline via application, which are available in languages other than English, including Polish.

Village President candidate Tom Benigno, and trustee candidates Anna Mitera, Andrew Kopinski, and Adam Chudzik, all independents, will not appear on the primary ballot.


Martwick dumps thousands into Frank Avino’s campaign coffers

Frank Avino has an enthusiasm problem. His run for trustee doesn’t seem to be attracting the kind of support he needs to get past the Feb 23rd primary opposite likely rival Danny Donnelly.

Avino’s backbreaking work posing for photo ops, while Donnelly is actually out there with earth moving equipment, just isn’t impressing Norridge’s voters.

So what’s a Robert Martwick stooge like Avino to do if he’s in danger of being “primaried” off the Norridge Improvement Party ticket? Throw money at the problem, of course.

Unfortunately, Avino’s political impotence also appears to extend to campaign funds, as he hasn’t been able to raise much if any any money lately.

His political action committee (PAC), Friends for Frank Avino, was down to $2,072 in the bank as of the fourth quarter 2020.

Strange, since Avino is the Norwood Park Township Democratic Committeeman, and the de jure leader of Mike Madigan’s Democratic Organization’s Norwood Park Township branch.

Donnelly isn’t exactly flush with campaign cash himself, but he has grassroots support… from people who actually live in Norridge.

Avino, by comparison, has to resort to outsiders, including the Chicago 38th ward boss, campaigning for him.

Moneybags Martwick

Cue “Silver Spoon Rob” Martwick to the rescue.

Frank Avino and Robert Martwick

Martwick, a Chicago resident, is the Chicago 38th Ward Democratic Committeeman, and Illinois 10th district state senator.

Campaign finances show a $5,000 payment on Feb 1 from Friends of Robert Martwick to Friends for Frank Avino, Avino’s candidate PAC.

Avino also nominally controls another PAC, the Norwood Park Township Democratic Organization, which reported $13,403.15 in the bank as of December 2020.

But if Avino is supposed to be a member of the “Norridge” Improvement Party, he may not be willing to tap those explicitly Democratic Organization funds directly.

A vote for Avino is a vote for Martwick

Avino has a quandry. On one hand, Martwick’s poor Norridge showing in the November election means Avino can’t really count on Martwick’s supporters, because there isn’t popular support for Martwick in Norridge.

On the other hand, if Avino is unable to raise money to make up for his lack of local grassroots support, he probably has no choice but to take Martwick’s green gold.

Clearly, Avino isn’t very high in the Democratic Machine hierarchy, if he can’t raise money without Martwick.

All the more reason why we don’t need yet another Chicago 38th Ward puppet on the Norridge Village board.

I’m voting in the Feb 23 primary for one and only one person – Danny Donnelly.

Adam Chudzik, Norridge