CRYSTAL LAKE, Ill. (WAND) - An Illinois lawmaker said on Tuesday he has started the process of pushing to recall Gov. JB Pritzker.
State Representative Allen Skillicorn says his decision came because of "continued inaction" by the governor to fix the Illinois unemployment claims website.
"This is his one and only job, is to get this website working and help the people of Illinois," Skillicorn told WAND. "He's the guy that put these people on unemployment, and he can't fix the darned website."
Skillicorn also listed the following timeline of what he called the governor's "failings". The below dates and descriptions are in the words of the lawmaker:
- March 21, 2020 – Statewide stay at home order goes into effect.
- April 15, 2020 – CBS 2 in Chicago reports that the State of Illinois was not getting help from the US Department of Labor because the state never asked for the help.
- April 24, 2020 – The State of Illinois enters into a no-bid contract with Deloitte Consulting LLC.
- May 15, 2020 – A breach of secure information is discovered by Rep. Terri Bryant who notified the Governor’s office.
- May 22, 2020 – Still no answers. No credit monitoring. The Governor’s office still has not informed victims of the breach.
According to Article III, Section 7, of the Illinois Constitution, a recall of the governor can be proposed if a petition gets a number of signatures equal to at least 15% of the total votes cast for governor in the previous election, from at least 25 different counties. Additionally, an affidavit must be signed by 20 or more state House members and 10 or more state Senators. No more than half of the signatures in each chamber can be from a single political party.
Skillicorn will have to file the petition with the State Board of Elections if he collects the minimum number of signatures. If the board certifies the petition, a special election would then be held for Illinois, asking voters if Pritzker should be removed from office.
Governor Pritzker responded to the issue at his daily briefing Tuesday, saying, "You couldn't possibly anticipate that we would have a number of employment filings that was an enormous multiple of that which occurred during the Great Recession... You're building the plane while trying to fly it, and you're trying to fly it while putting a million passengers on board, an almost impossible job, but one that IDES has handled as best it could."
No Illinois governor has ever been voted out of office by a recall election, and it's only happened twice in the nation's history.