Primary Election Results
By IL FOP Labor Council, Staff - Wednesday, March 21, 2018
From Leinenweber, Baroni and Daffada
Yesterday’s primary was generally very good for the FOP endorsed candidates. Of the 18 endorsed candidates, 3 did not have primaries, 4 lost and 11 won. In addition, although the FOP did not endorse candidates for constitutional office, the Democratic candidates for Governor and Attorney General, Pritzker and Raoul, were labor endorsed candidates and are the best-case scenario for the FOP.
Brian Stewart, John D’Amico and Marc Bell did not have primaries. Dan Burke and David Reis both lost. Dan Burke’s loss was a big negative for the FOP, but it was not a surprise. The candidate is a long serving incumbent whose district has had a huge demographic change since Burke was first elected. The district is 75% Hispanic now, and he was challenged by a Hispanic candidate. Reis was the one pick up for Proft and Uhlien who spent over $5 million on a variety of candidates. Despite the defeat of Reis, who supported the recent tax increase, Proft and Uhlien suffered general losses across the board, and were two of the biggest losers overall. This was made most clear with Durkin’s decisive defeat of Straub, as taking out Durkin was a key point of the Proft plan. Silverstein also lost a brutal primary defending his Democratic North Suburban seat. He was defeated by an SEIU member who is a progressive Democrat and he will be the next Senator after the General. Nic Zito also lost. He was running against a Proft backed candidate to replace Fortner in DuPage County.
The endorsed candidates overall had relatively strong victories. Martwick and Rita were two House Democrat incumbents who both had huge victories in defending their seats. Dan Didtech is running to keep Representative Sente’s seat Democrat, and he had a clear victory in his Lake County District. Lance Yednock, a generally labor supported candidate, won in his effort to beat Republican Long in Ottawa. Terri Bryant, Norrine Hammond, C.D. Davidsmeyer and Dan Brady all defended themselves against Proft backed candidates trying to take them out in House Republican Primaries. While these races started out close, they all ended up decisive victories. Andrew Chesney and Eddie Corrigan both defended House Republican seats as new candidates and both beat Proft supported candidates.
While there were ultimately no upsets in the Governor’s race, it was the most compelling race of the primary, in both parties. Pritzker beat expectations and won with a larger margin than any experts predicted, beating both Kennedy who slightly underperformed and Biss who beat expectations. Pritzker’s race was one of the first races to be called. Rauner, in contrast, faced a much narrower reelection than was expected against challenger Ives. The race was not ultimately decided until late in the evening. This was important, because it showed how vulnerable Rauner is going into the General Election. Pritzker received near double the votes in the primary than Rauner did.
The major upset of the night was Kwame Raoul’s win over Pat Quinn. Both candidates were running as Democratic candidates for Attorney General. Although former Governor Quinn had numerous negatives, he was positioned to do well because of high name recognition in an 8-way primary. Kwame was able to message effectively in the last weeks before the primary, and ultimately carried the night. Kwame will face off against Republican Erica Harold in the General Election.