November 2, 2012.  ROCKFORD, IL – David Hale, Coordinator of Rockford Tea Party, received an email message today indicating the patients at Rosewood Care Center, 1660 S Mulford Rockford, were “assisted” to vote this morning.  The email, sent from the granddaughter of a resident, reported

“My grandmother is at Rosewood in Rockford.  My mother was visiting her this morning.  My grandmother told Mom that she was helped to vote this morning. My grandmother informed her that they told her who to vote for.” 

The resident reported she had been told to vote for Barack Obama.

Hale was stranded at an airport in Canada, and phoned Jane Carrell, Coordinator of Northern IL Tea Party.  Carrell phoned Rosewood, and spoke with the Director of Nursing.  Carrell questioned whether representatives of both political parties were present at the time of the voting.  The Director of Nursing reported that she did not know, only that two persons were assisting residents.

In order to avoid any appearance of vote fraud, nursing homes permitting outsiders access to their residents for early voting are required by state election law to ensure that a representative of each party be present.   It is widely known that the technique of having nursing home residents vote for one party – even residents who have obvious symptoms of senility or Alzheimer’s Syndrome – has been widely practiced in the Chicago area. We should have been on alert for its occurrence in Rockford. 

Citizens who have a loved one in a nursing facility may wish to contact the facility, to inquire what safeguards are in place against such practices. 

Jane Carrell reports that Neighbors Rehabilitation Center, in Byron, where her late mother-in-law was resident, took seriously that residents who, in the common parlance, were no longer “in their right mind” not be permitted to file absentee ballots.  Registrars from the Ogle County Board of Elections come in to assist residents to vote there on the Monday before the election.



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