Reporting Mai Martinez
FRANKFORT, Ill. (CBS) — On election day, CBS 2’s Mai Martinez found some voters in Frankfort, IL who say someone is trying to shame them into voting.
Letters with “CITIZENS FOR EFFECTIVE LOCAL GOVERNMENT” at the top started arriving in mailboxes in Frankfort over the weekend. Along with the letters, a list of dozens of voters’ voting history.
Frankfort resident Julie Dutton’s mother’s name was among those on the list. “I was surprised my mom’s name was on there. I was just shocked. I was like ‘wow, really? They can put that out there?’ It’s crazy. It shouldn’t be. It should be private,” said Dutton.
The letter also states a list of “non-voters” will be mailed out and posted online after the April 9, 2013 election–prompting dozens of phone calls and emails to the Will County Clerk’s office.
“It shouldn’t be anywhere posted that you did or did not vote. It’s nobody else’s business,” said Will County Clerk Nancy Schultz Voots.
Schultz Voots was so alarmed, she asked the Will County State’s Attorney’s office to investigate. She was surprised by what they found.
“There’s nothing illegal about it,” said Schultz Voots.
As for where the info came from, she has her suspicions.
“A candidate is entitled to get lists of registered voters who voted but then these candidates could just give them to somebody else and they could be passing it on and I feel like happened here,” she explained.
Julie Dutton says if motivating voters to vote was the reason behind the letter, the group should go back to the drawing board.
“I think they could find other ways than publicly shaming people into do it,” said Dutton.
Will County authorities have not yet determined who is behind “CITIZENS FOR EFFECTIVE LOCAL GOVERNMENT.”