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Rockford mayoral candidate’s petition gets tossed out, McNamara could run unopposed

Republican Joseph Canova can no longer run against McNamara due to a paperwork issue.
Published: Dec. 11, 2020 at 9:30 PM CST
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ROCKFORD, Ill. (WIFR) -Republican Joseph Canova decided to run against Rockford Mayor Tom McNamara in the upcoming mayoral election, however his petition got tossed out.

“The only problem was his paperwork just wasn’t done the right way unfortunately, and had he reached out to us even a couple days before we could have coached him up and help him get across the finish line,” said Winnebago County Republican Party Chairperson Eli Nicolosi. “It’s looking like we aren’t going to have a Republican in the mayoral election unfortunately.”

Nicolosi says incorrect organization of the paperwork and failure to file a statement of economic interest caused Canova’s name to be removed.

“You always want to see opposition in an election,” said Nicolosi. “I think it’s important as voters that we have an exchange of ideas.”

Canova gave 23 News the following statement saying in part:

“The misfortune is that the people of Rockford will now more than likely not have a secondary point of view presented on the current issues, challenges, and opportunities facing us now and for the next four years.”

The local Democratic Party says finding a solid candidate to go up against McNamara could be tough.

“He’s done a great job,” said Winnebago County Democratic Chairperson Charlie Laskonis. “It’s a testament to his strong leadership and he’s had a lot of success in the four years and I could see why he’d be how his opponents or potential opponents might think he’s too formidable.”

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