Calloway files for a restraining order against Hairston, Piemonte says

William Calloway (Herald file photo)

Staff writer

On Thursday, challenger William Calloway’s campaign said that he had filed for a restraining order against Ald. Leslie Hairston (5th) to prevent her from taking office on Monday.

The Chicago Board of Elections, which certified the incumbent as the winner of the runoff by 176 votes, says Hairston will be seated until a hypothetical successor would be named.

Hairston’s attorney said he has not received any word from the presiding judge or been served by Calloway’s counsel.

Writing on Facebook Thursday afternoon, Calloway campaign advisor and former Herald editor Gabriel Piemonte wrote that Calloway had filed a restraining order against Hairston, “prohibiting her from being sworn in … within the context of the results in some precincts where there is evidence of problems.”

Calloway’s election challenge is predicated on the claim that precinct results were incorrectly recorded by judges on election night, though a discovery recount in 10 precincts found no evidence supporting a different result other than Hairston winning, according to Elections Board spokesman Jim Allen.

Ed Mullen, Hairston’s attorney, said he has not been served an amended complaint or seen any injunction issued by Cook County Circuit Court Judge LaGuina Clay-Herron, who is overseeing Calloway’s election challenge. He reiterated Allen’s statement that aldermanic terms of office last until successors are sworn in — City Council seats are not vacated unless incumbents resign.

Delmarie Cobb, Hairston’s campaign manager and spokeswoman, said they are operating under what the Elections Board told them, that Hairston will be sworn in again on May 20. “Calloway has every right to continue seeking redress if he believes something wrong took place on Election Day, but at some point, he starts to look like a sore loser whose only intention is to force Leslie Hairston to incur additional legal fees,” she said.

Calloway, Piemonte, campaign manager Bobby Burns and Calloway’s attorney Frank Avila all failed to respond to requests for comment. On Facebook, Piemonte said a statement was forthcoming, but none had appeared before Herald press time.