A total of 740 candidates filed petitions to run for their party’s nomination to state and federal offices in the June 28 primary election, including a fringe Republican slate backing former President Donald Trump’s false claims of endemic voter fraud. Monday was the deadline for filing petitions for the primary, which was moved from its
A total of 740 candidates filed petitions to run for their party’s nomination to state and federal offices in the June 28 primary election, including a fringe Republican slate backing former President Donald Trump’s false claims of endemic voter fraud.
Monday was the deadline for filing petitions for the primary, which was moved from its traditional March date this year due to delays in getting census data needed to draw new boundaries for the state’s 17 congressional districts.
The ballot is not yet final. In addition to inevitable withdrawals by some candidates, objections over candidate petitions can be filed through Monday, which leads to a state election board review.
Among the filings likely to gain scrutiny are those filed by candidates running under the “We are the people Illinois” banner in the GOP primary. Individuals associated with the group filed for governor, lieutenant governor, secretary of state, comptroller, treasurer and U.S. Senate.
Emily Johnson of Wheaton, the group’s candidate for governor, issued a campaign statement touting her support for the former Republican president who continues to perpetuate false claims that the 2020 presidential election was stolen by Democratic President Joe Biden.
“I will campaign with Trump and stand beside him as we fix the fraudulent election,” Johnson said.
Several GOP candidates for governor have struggled with how to confront Trump, trying not to alienate his supporters while also seeking to attract more moderate Republicans and independents.
The “We are the people Illinois’” group has shown signs of being unfamiliar with state government. Its candidate for secretary of state, Michelle Turney, has vowed to “sell all voting machines and implement fair elections of legal voters on paper ballots.”
Unlike many other states, the Illinois secretary of state does not oversee the state’s elections — that job is reserved for the bipartisan State Board of Elections. Voter sign-ups are conducted at SOS facilities.
Turney, from the Beverly neighborhood, said she is a Chicago Police Department sergeant currently on leave.
Many of the group’s public postings have also been critical of pandemic mitigation policies such as vaccine and mask mandates.
Johnson joins what is now a field of eight Republicans who have filed for the right to take on first-term Democratic Gov. J.B. Pritzker in the Nov. 8 general election.
Republicans filing for the office before Monday include Bull Valley businessman Gary Rabine, Aurora Mayor Richard Irvin, state Sen. Darren Bailey of Xenia and former state Sen. Paul Schimpf of Waterloo. Cryptocurrency venture capitalist Jesse Sullivan of Petersburg and Max Solomon of Hazel Crest filed at the deadline, which gives them the opportunity to grab the last spot on the ballot. Keisha Smith of Country Club Hills also filed, but did not file a lieutenant governor running mate, which is required.
Pritzker got a long shot Democratic primary opponent in Beverly Miles, from Chicago’s West Side.
In addition to Turney, the contest to replace retiring Secretary of State Jesse White features four Democrats: former state Treasurer Alexi Giannoulias, Chicago City Clerk Anna Valencia, Chicago Ald. David Moore, 17th, and Sidney Moore of Homewood. Republicans seeking the nomination are state Rep. Dan Brady of Bloomington and former U.S. Attorney John Milhiser of Springfield.
While first-term Democratic Attorney General Kwame Raoul was unopposed, Republicans seeking to challenge him included last day filer Tom DeVore of Sorento. DeVore is best known for being the lead attorney in several, largely unsuccessful challenges to Pritzker’s emergency orders dealing with the pandemic.
Also seeking the GOP nomination for attorney general are attorney Steve Kim of Deerfield and David Shestokas of Orland Park.
A total of eight Republicans filed for the nomination to challenge first-term Democratic U.S. Sen. Tammy Duckworth of Hoffman Estates. Five GOP contenders filed on the last day: Matthew Dubiel of Naperville, Anthony Williams of Dolton, Jimmy Lee Tilman of Chicago and Kathy Salvi of Mundelein. Salvi is the wife of Al Salvi, who lost the 1996 U.S. Senate race to Democratic U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin and a 1998 bid for secretary of state against White.
Also in the GOP U.S. Senate field is Maryann Mahlen of the “We are the people Illinois” slate and financial planner Robert Piton of Geneva, who worked in Arizona to try to push repeatedly unfounded claims of widespread election fraud in that state in the 2020 presidential election.
Duckworth is unopposed on the Democratic side.
In the South Side and south suburban 1st Congressional District, 20 Democrats and five Republicans filed for the open seat created by veteran Democratic U.S. Rep. Bobby Rush’s decision to retire at the end of his term.
Among the candidates who previously filed were Ald. Pat Dowell, 3rd, civil rights activist Jonathan Jackson; state Sen. Jacqueline Collins and workforce specialist Karin Norrington-Reaves, who Rush has endorsed. Filers at deadline included Democrats Jonathan Swain, Nykea McGriff and Charise Williams of Chicago and Ameena Mathews of Tinley Park.
In the newly created open-seat 3rd Congressional District, which goes from the Southwest Side to the western suburbs, a third Democrat, Iymen Chehade of Chicago, filed at the deadline to join state Rep. Delia Ramirez of Chicago and Ald. Gil Villegas, 36th.
The House Ethics Committee is investigating whether freshman Democratic U.S. Rep. Marie Newman of La Grange offered Chehade a job if she won the 2020 election to keep him out of the Democratic primary. Chehade has received a staff contract paid from Newman’s political fund.
Newman is challenging two-term Democratic U.S. Rep. Sean Casten of Downers Grove in the west suburban 6th Congressional District. Charles Hughes of Chicago also filed for that seat as a Democrat, while six Republicans are seeking their party’s nomination.
In the new suburban and exurban 11th District, seven Republicans filed for the right to challenge five-term Democratic U.S. Rep. Bill Foster of Naperville. The Republicans include two candidates who unsuccessfully sought the GOP nomination to run against two-term Democratic U.S. Rep. Lauren Underwood in 2020. Catalina Lauf of Woodstock, who spoke at the 2020 Republican convention where Trump was nominated for a second term, finished third and Jerry Evans of Warrenville finished sixth in the previous race.
James Marter of Oswego, who finished fifth in the GOP primary to challenge Underwood in 2020, is back with a new bid for the nomination along with five other Republicans: Scott Gryder of Oswego, Mike Koolidge of Rochelle, Jaime Milton of Fox River Grove, Jack Lombardi of Manhattan and Susan Starrett of North Aurora.
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