Bill Fawell's name won't be on the ballot when voters in the 17th Congressional District go to the polls Nov. 4. But he has declared himself to be in the race.
Fawell on Friday announced he will be a write-in candidate in the district, forced to do so, he said, because "the two major parties have made it impossible for a third-party candidate to get on the ballot in Illinois so that the people can have a real choice when they vote."
The district, which includes Whiteside and Carroll counties, is served by freshman Congresswoman Cheri Bustos, D-East Moline. Republican Bobby Schilling, of Colona, is seeking to regain the seat he lost to Bustos in 2012.
Fawell in April announced he was running as a Constitution Party candidate in the district. The Galena resident said in a news release that the process of collecting signatures was prohibitive.
"To run for Congress in Illinois," Fawell said, "I needed 14,000 signatures on my petition, which is really 24,000 to survive the challenges the two parties would have made to my petitions."
Fawell is founder of the super PAC Elect a New Congress. He said in the news release his campaign is based on four Senate bills he calls "Liberty Legislation." Those bills would audit the Federal Reserve Bank and its consultants, require all federal laws and policy be passed by only Congress, end omnibus bills, and require all laws be read in Congress before a vote.
“The theme of my campaign is simple,” Fawell told the Prairie Advocate in April. “Every problem in America can be traced to the government that rules over the people. The only solution is for the people to rule over that government.
“This defines liberty and, fortunately, it is within our grasp. We Americans must only reach out and take back our country.”