In overwhelming fashion Forest Park voters endorsed senators John McCain and Barack Obama as the candidates best suited to go head-to-head for the Oval Office in November’s general election. Illinois’ primary results are still unofficial, but the Cook County Clerk’s office has reported statistics that detail just how handily the two party front runners won local favor.
Both McCain and Obama swept every precinct in the village by wide margins, helping to put them over the top in statewide polling on Feb. 5. Obama, Illinois’ native son, garnered no less than 65 percent of the Democratic votes in any given precinct here. On the Republican side, McCain took at least 41 percent of the votes in each precinct.
More locally, residents in Proviso Township got behind River Forester Anita Alvarez in her bid to become the next state’s attorney, however, Forest Park bucked that trend.
According to the county clerk’s office, Alvarez won more votes in Proviso Township-some 7,200-than in any other suburban Cook County township. In the village though, it was Democrat Larry Suffredin who collected the most votes in the race to be the state’s next top prosecutor. Suffredin lost only four of Forest Park’s 12 precincts to Alvarez.
Alvarez won the Democratic contest and will face off against Republican Tony Peraica in the general election. Peraica ran uncontested for the party nod.
Voting in Forest Park presumably went well on the whole, said Village Clerk Vanessa Moritz, who did not receive any complaints from election judges or residents. Though her office was not in charge of overseeing the logistics of last Tuesday’s voting, Moritz said her office will often field phone calls from unhappy residents who are unable to reach county officials.
“I think if there are problems, they’re calling,” Moritz said. “I would say no news is good news.”
Across suburban Cook County, voter turnout was relatively high with 43 percent of the 1.35 million registered voters casting a ballot. Since 1992 there hasn’t been a presidential primary in which more than 40 percent of the registered voters turned out, county officials said.
With more than half of its registered voters tromping through wet and slushy conditions, Forest Park beat the suburban average. Fifty-two percent, or 4,089 voters, made it to the polls on Feb. 5.
The county has until Feb. 26 to certify the election results, but a spokesperson for the office said that process is likely to be concluded well ahead of the deadline. Eligible residents who did not register in time to vote in the primary can now do so for the Nov. 4 general election.