David Orr, Cook County Clerk https://jefforr.org David Orr is a Chicagoland politician and reformer. Wed, 14 Jun 2017 22:55:03 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=4.9.8 Speaking at the City Club of Chicago https://jefforr.org/david-orr-speaks-to-the-city-club-of-chicago https://jefforr.org/david-orr-speaks-to-the-city-club-of-chicago#comments Wed, 07 Jun 2017 22:21:32 +0000 https://jefforr.org/orr/?p=1603 On June 6th, 2017, I was privileged to speak in front of the City Club of Chicago about various challenges facing democracy and government today.


https://jefforr.org/david-orr-speaks-to-the-city-club-of-chicago/feed 1
Urged Arlington Heights Village Board To Stand With Workers https://jefforr.org/arlington-heights-village-board-members-to-stand-with-workers https://jefforr.org/arlington-heights-village-board-members-to-stand-with-workers#respond Tue, 02 May 2017 20:29:20 +0000 https://jefforr.org/orr/?p=1593 Read More]]> Cook County Clerk David Orr, who also attended the meeting, cited statistics that 65 percent of Arlington Heights voters supported a higher state minimum wage and 75 percent favored paid sick days in nonbinding referendums.

“There’s nothing wrong with treating people who do some of the toughest work in the world with a little bit of dignity and respect,” Orr said at a rally before the meeting organized by the workers rights group Arise Chicago.

A similar protest was held before the March 20 village board meeting, when trustees were first scheduled to vote, until Hayes proposed a decision be delayed until May 1 to allow more time to hear from constituents.

Municipalities that have already passed opt-out ordinances include Barrington, Elk Grove Village, Mount Prospect, Rosemont, Schaumburg, Streamwood and Wheeling, and others are considering doing the same. They have until July to do so, when the county ordinances approved last fall take effect.

The full article can be found here at Daily Herald.

https://jefforr.org/arlington-heights-village-board-members-to-stand-with-workers/feed 0
Move Cook County Tax Sale to August https://jefforr.org/move-cook-county-tax-sale-to-august https://jefforr.org/move-cook-county-tax-sale-to-august#respond Thu, 30 Mar 2017 06:36:20 +0000 https://jefforr.org/orr/?p=1585 Read More]]> Moving Cook County’s Annual Tax Sale to April 3, 2017 is causing thousands of homeowners to panic at the prospect of losing their homes.  A legislative change made in 2014 moved the annual tax sale ahead by several months from August to April. The accelerated schedule has taken homeowners by surprise due to the shortened period to remit payment for delinquent taxes. In some cases, notice was not received by homeowners due to another address on file with County offices.

Successful bidders at the tax sale purchase a lien on property that, if not redeemed, may result in the homeowner losing their property. After the tax sale occurs, a homeowner generally has between 24 and 36 months to redeem this lien before losing their title.

This accelerated schedule comes at the expense of property owners while benefiting tax buyers the most. Such benefits must not be borne by homeowners.

The legislature must act now to extend next week’s tax sale. I applaud Representative Elgie Sims, Jr. for introducing Amendment 1 to HB155, legislation that would move this year’s Annual Tax Sale to August and extend the date for subsequent tax sales to June 1st.

I urge the legislature and Governor Rauner to take swift action and pass HB155 as amended.

https://jefforr.org/move-cook-county-tax-sale-to-august/feed 0
Honor King’s legacy by continuing the voting rights fight https://jefforr.org/honor-kings-legacy-by-continuing-the-voting-rights-fight https://jefforr.org/honor-kings-legacy-by-continuing-the-voting-rights-fight#respond Thu, 19 Jan 2017 14:57:22 +0000 https://jefforr.org/orr/?p=1577 Read More]]> We are facing a critical time for voting rights in our country. On [Jan. 16], I spoke to the Southland Ministerial Health Network at their Martin Luther King Day Spirit of Excellence Awards about the need to continue the fight for voting rights as the best way to honor Dr. King’s legacy.

Not that long ago in this country, African Americans who tried to register to vote and those who would help them register, were locked out of clerks’ offices, or worse, intimidated, beaten, even killed – so that they wouldn’t exercise their right to vote. The 1965 Voting Rights Act helped end that violent voter suppression.

As we honor the legacy of Dr. King and those who fought for the Voting Rights Act by registering to vote and going to the polls, we must confront the ugly truth that across the country, voting rights are being threatened again. In 2013 the Supreme Court severely weakened the Voting Rights Act, giving many states wide latitude to restrict access to the polls, which they are doing with enthusiasm. We have yet to see what further damage the Supreme Court will do under the next administration.

Despite the current attacks on voting rights, in Illinois we have improved access and ease in voting. Our successes would not have been possible without the help of engaged and involved citizens, civic groups and legislators. Eleven years ago I introduced early voting to Illinois, and each election cycle we see significant increases in Cook County residents voting early. We have also implemented online voter registration, same-day voter registration and expanded our election judge program to include high school students.

This year, we reached a record 3 million registered voters in Cook County. We have worked diligently to ensure the lists are cleaner and more accurate.

But there is still work to do, here and nationally.

Across the country, we must bring back crucial parts of the Voting Rights Act and reverse dangerous decisions on allowing money to flood our political system. It is outrageous that the Supreme Court has said that your influence will, in effect, be determined by how much money you have.

Here in Illinois, we must pass Automatic Voter Registration (AVR). AVR will save us money by streamlining the process of cleaning the voting rolls and thereby ensuring we have the cleanest rolls possible. Government agencies should harness technology to share information so that voting rolls are accurate and citizens don’t need to unnecessarily engage with multiple bureaucracies.

A functional democracy requires voting so the wishes of the electorate are supposed to guide our public policy. When democracy is weakened, it leads to what we see today: Public policy that is simply not what people want. Voters do not want continuing inequality or justice that is determined based on your skin color or your wealth. Dr. King understood this.

He understood the relationship between racism, economic inequality and the right to vote. Today our challenge is galvanizing our energy to continue the fight he gave his life for.

https://jefforr.org/honor-kings-legacy-by-continuing-the-voting-rights-fight/feed 0
Congrats to Terry & Anthony! #journeyto10k https://jefforr.org/10000-same-sex-marriages-in-cook-journeyto10k https://jefforr.org/10000-same-sex-marriages-in-cook-journeyto10k#respond Wed, 31 Aug 2016 20:03:11 +0000 https://jefforr.org/orr/?p=1566 Today we are proud to announce issuing the 10,000th same-sex marriage license in Cook county.  Here is a short video!


https://jefforr.org/10000-same-sex-marriages-in-cook-journeyto10k/feed 0
Talking Politics about 2016 Presidential Election https://jefforr.org/talking-politics-about-2016-presidential-election https://jefforr.org/talking-politics-about-2016-presidential-election#respond Wed, 17 Feb 2016 13:22:14 +0000 https://jefforr.org/orr/?p=1537 Recently spoke with Paul Lisnek on CLTV’s “Politics Tonight” about youth voter registration in suburban Cook County, Politics in Chicago and in the presidential election.  Watch the segment below –


https://jefforr.org/talking-politics-about-2016-presidential-election/feed 0
Encouraging Youth Participation in Presidential Election https://jefforr.org/encouraging-youth-participation-in-presidential-election Sat, 13 Feb 2016 12:27:14 +0000 https://jefforr.org/orr/?p=1533 Read More]]> With next Tuesday’s voter registration deadline quickly approaching for the March 15 Illinois primary election, Cook County Clerk David Orr is reaching out to young people about the importance of voting and how they can register.

Orr spoke to Evanston Township High School students Thursday morning, and his staff helped eligible teens register to vote before the regular registration period ends February 16. Evanston Township High School’s community service club has already registered about 180 students to vote so far this election cycle.

In Illinois, 17-year-olds who will turn 18 by the November 8 general election can participate in the primary election.

Speaking to Progress Illinois after his youth voter engagement event, Orr said his office has “seen a lot of interest” in registration among 17-year-olds, with at least a few thousand teens taking advantage of the opportunity thus far.

Orr discussed the importance of the youth vote and how it is influencing the presidential primary races.

“When young people vote, they can have a dramatic” impact, Orr said.

Read the rest of the article at Progress Illinois.

2016 Election Judge Appreciation Day https://jefforr.org/2016-election-judge-appreciation-day https://jefforr.org/2016-election-judge-appreciation-day#respond Fri, 15 Jan 2016 02:36:18 +0000 https://jefforr.org/orr/?p=1541 Read More]]> Cook County Clerk David Orr honored the top election judges in suburban Cook County Thursday at the ninth annual Judge Recognition Ceremony.

Nearly 65 election judges throughout suburban Cook County received special recognition for their continued excellence and dedication serving voters on Election Day.

One of the dedicated honorees was 52-year Election Day veteran Mary Ann Anifer of Palos Hills. “We are very fortunate to be able to vote in this country and if I can help someone else vote in the process, I’m all for it,” said the Palos Township equipment manager. “This is a very important part of life–your vote is your voice and if you don’t vote, you don’t have a voice.”

Clerk Orr, joined by CBS 2 News reporter Derrick Young who emceed the event, lauded the guests for their outstanding efforts and dedication as election judges and equipment managers.

“Everyone here is the best at what they do,” Orr said. “We know that each polling place is in excellent hands when you’re on duty.”

The honorees ranged in age from 20 to 87 and hold well over 500 years of combined election experience. The ceremony and lunch were held at the Cook County Administration Building, 69 W. Washington St.

Crestwood resident Lois Nutley, another revered judge with decades of experience, was also honored for her 45 years of service to Bremen Township.

Berwyn Township equipment manager Miriam Acevedo recalled one experience in particular that has kept her coming back for 15 years. “During my second year, an elderly woman that had just become an American citizen came into my precinct to vote for the first time in her life,” the Cicero resident said. “She was not allowed to vote in her home country and was worried that she would vote incorrectly and get in trouble. We worked through it together and the smile she had on her face was all the reward I needed.”

Suburban Cook County’s nearly 10,000 election judges are responsible for preparing their designated polling place, setting up election equipment, assisting voters and securing votes at the end of the night. All judges attend regular trainings each election cycle to learn new policies, procedures and techniques.

To view a photo album of the ceremony click here. A video of the event is now available on the Clerk’s YouTube channel.

The Clerk’s office is always looking for individuals to serve their communities on Election Day. Anyone interested in learning how to apply to become a pollworker can visit the Clerk’s website for details.


Cook County Clerk David Orr honored election judges from throughout suburban Cook County for their exemplary work at a reception at his downtown Chicago offices.
Courtesy of Bryan Docter, Cook County Clerk’s Office
Daily Herald report
Cook County Clerk David Orr honored nearly 65 of the county’s nearly 10,000 election judges from throughout suburban Cook County last week at the ninth annual Judge Recognition Ceremony.

Orr lauded the guests for their outstanding efforts and dedication as election judges and equipment managers. “We know that each polling place is in excellent hands when you’re on duty.”

The honorees ranged in age from 20 to 87. Crestwood resident Lois Nutley was honored for her 45 years of service.

Equipment manager Miriam Acevedo of Cicero recalled helping an elderly woman that had just become a citizen vote for the first time. “She was not allowed to vote in her home country and was worried that she would vote incorrectly and get in trouble. We worked through it together and the smile she had on her face was all the reward I needed.”

Honorees from the Northwest suburbs by township were Barrington: Janice Dahm of South Barrington and Jang Koo of Hoffman Estates; Elk Grove: Hans Lim and EF Gina Smith, both of Mount Prospect; Hanover: Suzan Shipyor and Bennie Sowers, both of Elgin; Leyden: Linda Bachi and Dorene Brandstatter, both of Elmwood Park; Maine: Zbigniew Iwaniszyn of Niles and Abba Rabinovitz of Des Plaines; Palatine: John Dorman of Arlington Heights and Fredricka Thigpen of Palatine; Schaumburg: Isabel Lopez and Pralhad Patil, both of Schaumburg; and Wheeling: Daniel Hostetler of Mount Prospect and Lenore Stevens of Arlington Heights.

Election judges are responsible for preparing their designated polling place, setting up election equipment, assisting voters and securing votes at the end of the night. All judges attend regular trainings each election cycle to learn new policies, procedures and techniques. Anyone interested in learning how to apply to become a poll worker can visit the clerk’s website for details.

https://jefforr.org/2016-election-judge-appreciation-day/feed 0
Voter Registration Drive in Suburban Cook for Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Holiday https://jefforr.org/voter-registration-drive-in-suburban-cook-for-dr-martin-luther-king-jr-holiday Thu, 14 Jan 2016 04:40:23 +0000 https://jefforr.org/orr/?p=1522 Read More]]> “We believe one of the great ways to honor Martin Luther King Jr. is to understand we can make our society better, our government more accountable if people register and vote,” Cook County Clerk David Orr said.


CHICAGO (January 11, 2016) – Cook County Clerk David Orr, County Board President Toni Preckwinkle, and Chicago Board of Elections Commissioner Jonathan Swain were joined today by a host of civic and faith organizations, at a press conference to announce a weekend of voter registration and deputy registrar training events to take place throughout the city and Cook County suburbs the weekend of Martin Luther King, Jr. Day.

“Dr. King saw the serious challenges in our society and gave his life for dramatic social change,” Orr said. “He challenged the status quo. We need to challenge the status quo, and that begins by getting people registered to vote.”

Faith groups from across Cook County attended the press conference at the George Dunne Cook County Office Building, 69 W. Washington St., to show their support for the Martin Luther King, Jr. Voter Registration Drive.

Many of the churches and organizations will hold events to register voters and swear in individuals as deputy registrars, allowing them to register voters. Today’s attendees included: Inspirational Deliverance Center, People’s Church of the Harvest, Westside Ministers Coalition, Victory Christian International Ministries, Greater St. John Bible Church, New Mount Pilgrim Missionary Baptist Church, Couriers for Christ and Sweet Holy Spirit Church.

“Working on behalf of the right to vote honors the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and those who selflessly battled the long-established status quo so others could register and go to the polls,” Preckwinkle said. “Dr. King didn’t hope for change – he demanded it, and worked tirelessly to break the systemic racism that deprived generations of this basic right.’

“It is our collective responsibility to honor this legacy,” said Preckwinkle. “We can do this by being leaders in our communities – to get our friends and neighbors interested and involved, by making sure that no one’s voice is stifled, and that everyone who is eligible to vote is registered to vote.”

Representatives from several area civic organizations also joined in the announcement, they included: Chicago Votes, Asian Americans Advancing Justice, Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Mikva Challenge, N’ The Know With Moe for Social Justice, the Westside and Southside branches of the NAACP.

The weekend of events (Jan. 16-18) will honor the legacy of Dr. King and his crucial role in the fight for voting rights and civil engagement, while encouraging people throughout Chicago and the suburbs to lead their community voter registration efforts, through rallies, voter registration, deputy registrar drives and much more.

Clerk Orr reminded all residents of Cook County that 17-year-olds who will turn 18 before the November 8thGeneral Election that they can also register online at cookcountyclerk.com/RegisterToVote and vote in the March 15, 2016 primary.

The Clerk’s Office also offers Online Mail Ballot applications. Simply visit cookcountyclerk.com/VoteByMail to request a mail ballot, so you can vote from the comfort of your home.

A video of the announcement and a photo album of the news conference can be viewed on the Clerk’s website.

To stay up-to-date on countywide events throughout MLK weekend, visit the Cook County Clerk’s website for an updated list.

The MLK Voter Registration Drive weekend events will include:

Saturday, January 16
Voter Registration Trainings

Mount Zion Missionary Baptist Church (10:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.)
1113 Clark Street
Evanston, IL 60201

Victory Christian International Ministries (10:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.)
2206 W. 167th Street
Markham, IL 60428

Rock of Ages Baptist Church (10:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.)
1405 Madison St
Maywood, IL 60153

Austin Community Family Center (9:00 a.m. – 10:00 a.m.)
501 N Central Ave
Chicago, IL 60644

Chicago Board of Elections (9:30 a.m. – 11:30 a.m.)
69 W Washington
Chicago, IL 60602

Rainbow PUSH Coalition (12:00 p.m. – 2:00 p.m.)
950 E. 50th Place
Chicago, IL 60615

NAACP Westside Branch (10:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.)
5820 W. Chicago Ave, 2nd Floor
Chicago IL 60651

NACCP Southside Branch – Avalon Public Library (11:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.)
8148 South Stony Island Ave
Chicago, IL 60617
Sunday, January 17
MLK Events

New Mount Pilgrim Missionary Baptist Church (5:00 p.m.)
4301 W Washington ST
Chicago, IL 60624

Voter Registration Events

Sweet Holy Spirit
Bishop Larry Trotter
8621 S South Chicago Ave
Chicago, IL 60617

Triedstone Full Gospel Church
Bishop Simeon Gordon
1415 W 104th St
Chicago, IL 60643

True Holiness Church of God In Christ
Pastor Carl Harris
15300 Loomis Ave
Harvey, IL 60426

Peace and Goodwill
Pastor Fisher Cook
15311 3rd Ave
Phoenix, IL 60426

True Light Baptist Church
Dr. LaRue Kidd
7300 South Maryland Avenue
Chicago, IL 60619

Inspirational Deliverance Center Church of God In Christ
Pastor Shirley Hughes
647 N Parkside Ave
Chicago, IL 60644

People Church of The Harvest
Dr. Michael Eaddy
3570 W 5th Ave
Chicago, IL 60624

Christ Universal Church of Holiness
Pastor Josie Nails
2715 E. 92nd Street
Chicago, IL

Victory Christian International Ministries
Apostle Carl White
2206 W. 167th Street
Markham, IL 60428

Bethlehem Star Missionary Baptist Church
Pastor Roosevelt Watkins, III
9230 S. Cottage Grove
Chicago, IL 60619

True Vine Church of God In Christ
Pastor Harley E. Hagler
400 23rd Ave
Bellwood, IL 60104

Greater Rock Missionary Baptist Church
Pastor Floyd James
7818 S. Independence
Chicago, IL 60624

The Spirit of truth Missionary Baptist Church
Rev. Robert Patterson
3443 West Harrison St
Chicago, IL 60624

Gods House Of Divine Revelation Baptist Church
Pastor Angela Walker
8308 South Halsted St
Chicago, IL 60620

Greater St. John Holiness Missionary Baptist Church
Pastor Ira Acree
1256 N Waller Ave
Chicago, IL 60651

Monday, January 18
MLK Events

Victory Christian International Ministries (11:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m.)
2206 W. 167th Street
Markham, IL 60428

Bethlehem Star Missionary Baptist Church (TBA)
9231 S Cottage Grove Ave
Chicago, IL 60619

To restore democracy, overturn Citizens United ruling https://jefforr.org/restore-democracy-overturn-citizens-united-ruling https://jefforr.org/restore-democracy-overturn-citizens-united-ruling#respond Mon, 24 Aug 2015 12:49:26 +0000 https://jefforr.org/orr/?p=1509 Read More]]> To restore democracy, overturn Citizens United ruling


“Money changes everything,” the saying goes, and its disastrous effect is being felt throughout American politics. Our democracy is under siege since the Supreme Court’s Citizens United decision gave free rein to SuperPACs and dark money, elongating an already-lengthy election cycle and further discouraging voter participation in elections.

We are more than one year away from the November 2016 presidential election, yet candidates have already been up and down the well-worn campaign fund-raising trail. When John F. Kennedy announced his run for the White House in 1960, it was 311 days before Election Day. In March of 2015, Ted Cruz announced his bid for the presidency nearly twice as far out – 596 days before Election Day. The campaign is now a scramble to be first to start collecting big checks from corporate sugar daddies, and that’s just wrong. It distorts the campaign process, and results in elected leaders beholden to benefactors rather than the public interest.

An unprecedented $7 billion was spent by candidates, parties and outside groups in the 2012 presidential cycle, according to the Federal Election Commission. For 2016? The total is projected to reach a new record – $10 billion. With that kind of money, you could buy the Chicago Cubs and eight space shuttles. The oil magnate Koch brothers alone, arguably the biggest political donors in America, have committed to spending nearly $1 billion.

Both the Republican and Democratic parties are mired in this ceaseless mining for big money to keep their campaign machinery running. Earlier this month, it was reported that nearly 20 “ultra-rich” Americans — including bankers, hedge fund managers, and media barons — hedged their bets by contributing to both Jeb Bush and Hillary Clinton. While both parties’ candidates have had their hands out, Republican campaigns, PACs and Super PACs have raised four times as much. It’s no coincidence that Democrats by and large are supporting campaign finance reform.

The promise of “one person, one vote” is broken when a handful of billionaires can underwrite parties and candidates with their vast wealth. It’s hard to have faith in one-on-one, face-to-face politics — talking to your neighbors and voters — or believe that the average person’s vote still carries the same weight as those who fund an endless barrage of attack ads, distortion and misinformation.

But I still believe in the promise of our democracy.  I believe that our democracy can somehow be restored. I believe that every vote matters. But we cannot continue to allow the voices of a few to speak for us all.  We must level the playing field for all who want to become involved and run for office. That means overturning Citizens United, working toward campaign finance reform such as the Government by the People Act, and restoring the power of each person’s vote.

David Orr,  Cook County Clerk

https://jefforr.org/restore-democracy-overturn-citizens-united-ruling/feed 0