Lake County Coroner Thomas Rudd says his handling of a few controversial cases and his challenge to Lake County politics led to the challenging of his re-election petitions and his subsequent decision to withdraw from the race Monday.
Rudd, a first-term incumbent from Lake Forest, posted a statement to his election website Monday evening elaborating on his reasons to step back from his pursuit of the Democratic Party nomination — one day before he was scheduled to contest a formal challenge to his candidate paperwork.
“I believe that my petitions were challenged because of these cases, my unwillingness to accept Lake County politics, and the positive relationships I have established, including in the minority communities, which frightened some who seek to maintain the status quo of lifelong Lake County politicos,” Rudd said in a statement.
But Rudd also told the Daily Herald he “dropped out because I didn’t have enough signatures after the objection.”
Rudd’s candidate paperwork had been challenged by Theodore M. Livengood Jr. and Robert J. Bednar, two Lake County Republicans. Specific details of the objection haven’t been publicized. Rudd has not commented on his petitions in defense. A hearing before a three-member electoral board to decide the issue was scheduled for Tuesday.
Rudd’s departure from the March primary ballot leaves Michael P. Donnenwirth of Waukegan as the lone Democrat in the race. Rudd could still run as an independent candidate in the November general election, but he said he hasn’t decided whether he will.
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