FILE - Andy Manar, Illinois, 2020, Virus Outbreak Illinois Legislature

Illinois State Sen. Andy Manar, D-Bunker Hill, delivers his remarks during debate on SB1863, a bill dealing with vote by mail and other changes for the 2020 election, on the floor of the Illinois Senate at the Illinois State Capitol, Friday, May 22, 2020, in Springfield, Ill.

(The Center Square) – The battle over mail-in voting in Illinois continues.

A group of Republicans recently sued over a law they claim is designed to expand voting by mail to dilute Republican votes and tilt elections in favor of Democrats, while also risking a spike in voter fraud.

Republicans bringing the lawsuit claim Governor J.B. Pritzker violated Illinoisan’s voting rights by signing into law a partisan voting scheme that is designed to “harvest Democratic ballots, dilute Republican ballots, and to generate enough Democratic ballots after election day to sway the result.”

Northern Illinois University professor of political science Scott Schraufnagel said mail-in voter fraud is practically nonexistent, but there is one drawback.

What we worry about with mail-in voting is family pressure, because voting becomes a little more public at that point,” Schraufnagel said. “You’re not in a booth.”

Some voters in east-central Illinois have received applications in the mail with instructions to return them to Champaign County Clerk Aaron Ammons, but the address provided for the clerk’s office included the wrong zip code. Ammons said he and his office are aware of the error, calling it “a simple fix.”

Illinois election officials scolded Ammons for counting early votes before Election Day in March, which is against Illinois law. Ammons, a Democrat, was accused of tabulating early votes beginning the night before the election.

Kayleen Carlson, president of the political action group Illinois Rising Action, said Ammons needs to explain what happened.

He merely shrugs it off when addressing it on social media,” Carlson said. “This is a big mistake. He’s got to be transparent and needs to answer the questions that our surrounding this latest error.”

A request for comment from Ammons went unanswered.

Staff Reporter

Kevin Bessler reports on statewide issues in Illinois for the Center Square. He has over 30 years of experience in radio news reporting throughout the Midwest.