Democrats Maintain a Supermajority on the Lake County Board While Republicans Won Two Close Contests

Democrats maintain a supermajority on the lake county board while republicans won two close contests four years after their historic victories in Lake County in 2018.

As Lake County’s late-arriving mail and provisional ballots were counted on Tuesday, Republicans managed to scrape out two narrow victories in Districts 2 and 3, guaranteeing they would keep their County Board caucus above five seats.

Adam Schlick of Wauconda, who received 50.5% of the vote, defeated Linda Troester of Round Lake, a Democrat, by just 157 votes in District 2. Wendy Meister, a Democratic opponent from Riverwoods, had a deficit of roughly 400 votes going into the final day.

Still, Ann Maine of Lincolnshire held on to victory in District 3 with 51% of the vote. Meister came just short of unseating Maine, who has served on the Lake County Board since 2002, winning 164 of the 248 votes added to the tally on Tuesday.

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Before counting 188 late postal and provisional ballots on Tuesday, Schlick, a Wauconda trustee and firefighter, had a lead of 197 votes. Schlick said Tuesday night, “I’m proud of the race we both ran, kept it clean, stayed to our problems and who would be the best candidate.”

Despite being “disappointed, of course,” Troester said in a Facebook post on Tuesday that she was pleased to have run a campaign “talking about who I am and how I could help the inhabitants of my neighbourhood without any negativity.”

Troester continued, “Of course, I have to congratulate Adam Schlick on winning the race. “I wish him well, and he is now MY Lake County Board representative. I might even occasionally speak with him!

Schlick expressed his eagerness to “roll up his sleeves” and begin working on the board, saying it would be a chance to “learn a new layer of governance.” I’m excited about the challenge, he remarked.

The chats I’ve had with some board members whose elections weren’t as close made them feel a little more at ease, and with (other) public authorities who have reached out have been great.

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The process is ongoing; the county still has work to do with the Department of Transportation and other entities. The other open seats were won by Democrats Esiah Campos (District 16) and Sara Knizhnik (District 18) by sizable percentages.

She made her way around the vast district, which stretches from Riverwoods on the county’s southern border up to Gurnee and includes a portion of Libertyville and unincorporated Wildwood, Maine estimated that she had walked “probably 80 or 90 miles” during her campaign.

So I don’t use an app and ask, “Oh, is this Republican?” when I go door-to-door—stated Maine. “I just knock on every door because I’m here to represent you,” is the message I’m trying to convey.

Maine formerly represented District 21, which included some of the same territories. Still, it was transferred to District 3 following redistricting in 2021 and a decision to reduce the Lake County Board from 21 to 19 members.

According to Maine, she received enough support from independent voters and some Democrats to secure the victory. “I’ve worked on purchases of thousands of acres of a forest preserve and things like that,” Maine said.

“I’ve got those bike path connections, and I’ve got neighbourhoods Lake Michigan water, I’ve put in roundabouts. “I am exactly that. People who know me personally, people familiar with my work and what I’ve accomplished for their communities, and I believe door-to-door canvassing is the key.

As of Wednesday afternoon, Meister has not responded to inquiries seeking comment. Although Maine and Democrat Marah Altenberg had to run in new districts, all 16 of the current Lake County Board members who ran were elected to another term.

After her former District 20 was abolished, Altenberg defeated rival Joe Janicki in the newly created District 19. Following the relocation of her old District 2 to the west and her victory against Steve Snarski in the June primary, Democrat Diane Hewitt won an uncontested run in District 8, which encompasses portions of Waukegan, Beach Park, and Zion.

In contrast to last year, when 254,217 ballots were counted for a turnout of 56.71%, this year’s turnout was just under 50%, at 49.77%, or 230,574 votes out of 463,324 registered voters.

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Although the turnout in the 2014 midterm election was more significant in percentage (50.13%), the 2022 Lake County turnout exceeded the 2014 tally of 202,532 ballots. Additionally, more people (207,499 votes) cast ballots than in 2010, although a lesser percentage (51.28%) did so.

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