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Our View: Thumbs down to teen's voting snag

Published: Friday, March 28, 2014 9:28 p.m. CDT

Thumbs down to the voter registration snag experienced by a Geneva teenager and her family.

Madelyn Juby, a 17-year-old Geneva High School senior, went into Kane County Clerk Jack Cunningham’s office to register for the election earlier this month with a photo ID, library card and Social Security number but initially was not allowed to register, according to her family.

Her mother, a Geneva School District 304 Board member, said employees told her daughter she could not register because Madelyn did not have an ID with a signature, which was not noted as a requirement on the clerk’s website. Cunningham and Supervisor of Elections Suzanne Fahnestock disputed that version of events Friday, saying the problem was Madelyn Juby did not have two forms of ID.

Leslie Juby went to the clerk’s office to demand answers, and said it took about an hour before her daughter was allowed to register by using the last four digits of her social security number. Leslie Juby called the episode “disheartening.”

We agree, and are glad she responded by filing a complaint with the Illinois Board of Elections, as well as contacting Kane County State’s Attorney Joe McMahon.

Cunningham and his staff owe it to Kane County residents to thoroughly dissect what went awry in this situation, and make certain training for anyone in the office involved with registering voters is airtight.

Not everyone would have had the persistence to troubleshoot this issue like the Juby family. There is no excuse for confusion or incompetence that potentially could deter a voter from casting her ballot.

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