Review of 2022 Contested Primary Races

By Benjamin Cox on June 27, 2022 at 4:04pm

Polls open at 6AM tomorrow throughout the state. There are many contested federal and statewide races throughout Illinois that will be watched nationally.

Here’s a review of the contested races that WLDS/WEAI will be watching tomorrow:

There are 7 Republicans vying for the chance to take on Democrat incumbent Tammy Duckworth in November. Belleville Navy veteran and retired police officer and IRS worker Peggy Hubbard and long-time Chicagoland Attorney Kathy Salvi have appeared in the frontrunners in this race. Chicago IT professional Casey Chlebek, Naperville school choice advocate Matt Dubiel, Geneva investment firm owner Bobby Piton, Chicago radio producer Jimmy Lee Tillman III, and Pastor Anthony Williams.

The 15th Congressional District, which now houses portions of the former 18th, 13th, and 15th Congressional Districts stretches from the state’s eastern to western border covering 32 counties. It’s easily one of the largest Congressional districts in the state and possibly the country. Republican incumbents Rodney Davis and Mary Miller have been locked into a bitter campaign against one another. The winner will face off against Democrat challenger Paul Lange, a commodity broker from Quincy. Lange ran for the 96th Illinois Representative seat in 1994 and 1996 and lost both times.

The 15th Congressional District Democrats will also have a race to choose from in the primary. Adams County Democratic Central Committee Chair Katherine Daniels is challenging Liz Brown-Reeves, a political consultant from Springfield, to be the District Committeewoman. Brown-Reeves has notably picked up the endorsement of Governor J.B. Pritzker for the seat.

The Illinois Gubernatorial primary has a 6-way race for the Republican nomination. Early front-runner, Aurora Mayor Richard Irvin whose running mate is Morrisonville State Representative Avery Bourne, has faded in many recent polls. Louisiana State Senator Darren Bailey and his running mate, Chicago media personality Stephanie Trussell have surged to be the frontrunner in the race. Bailey notably picked up an endorsement from former President Donald Trump at the Adams County Fairgrounds in Mendon over the weekend at a rally stumping for Mary Miller. Petersburg native and cryptocurrency capitalist Jesse Sullivan has quietly slipped into second place in several polls down the stretch. Sullivan’s running mate is former Jeanne Ives’ communications Director Kathleen Murphy of Chicago suburbs. Former 58th District State Senator Paul Schimpf of Monroe County and former Republican State Representative Candidate Carolyn Schofield of McHenry County; McHenry County capitalist Gary Rabine and 2016 at-large Republican presidential delegate Aaron Del Mar of Palatine; and Chicago attorney Max Solomon and Chicago parental rights activist Latasha Fields round out the remainder of the crowded field.

Democrat incumbent J.B. Pritzker faces a primary challenge from Chicago military veteran and nurse Beverly Miles and her running mate Karla Shaw. Miles previously ran unsuccessfully for alderman in Chicago’s 28th Ward in 2019.

The other crowded state race is for Secretary of State. Long-time Democrat incumbent Jesse White elected to not run for a seventh term in office. White leaves as serving the longest tenure as Illinois’ Secretary of State, and arguably one of its most popular politicians.

Democrats have 4 candidates vying for the nomination tomorrow. The two biggest names in the race are former Illinois Treasurer Alexi Giannoulias and Chicago City Clerk Anna Valencia. This looks to be a tight race. Chicago Business & Charity CEO Sidney Moore and 17th Ward Chicago Alderman David Moore round out the challengers.

Former Illinois House leader Dan Brady of McLean County and former Trump-appointed chief prosecutor for the federal Central Illinois District Court John Milhiser of Springfield are facing off for the Republican nomination for Secretary of State.

Three Republicans are vying for the Republican nomination to face off against Democrat incumbent Kwame Raoul for Illinois Attorney General. Former Cook County Assistant State’s Attorney David Shestokas, 2014 Lieutenant Governor candidate Steve Kim of Chicago, and downstate attorney Thomas DeVore. DeVore likely has the best name recognition, as he brought numerous lawsuits against the Pritzker Administration’s executive orders related to the Covid-19 pandemic.

There are no contested races for Comptroller or Treasurer for the primary.

County Races

Morgan County – Morgan County has no contested races for County Board, Sheriff, County Clerk, Treasurer, or the 1 seat for County Commissioner.

Cass County – Cass County has one contested race for the Democrat nominations for Board District 2. Incumbents Kim Hance, Gary Noe, and Connie Starkey face a challenge from Ronald Culves. Culves is a Ward 3 Alderman for the City of Beardstown.

Greene County – The 7 Republican nominations for Greene County Board have 10 candidates. Incumbents Earlene Castleberry, Chris Elliott, Christy Lake, Andrea Schnelten, and Board Chairman Mark Strang have challenges from John Forsting, Bob Hall, Brandan Malin, Missy Mehrhoff, and Richard Ross. The 7 chosen candidates will face off against Democrats Joyce Clark an incumbent, and former Roodhouse City Council member and North Greene teacher David McGraw in November. All other races are uncontested for their nominations for the November General Election.

White Hall Precinct 1 Republican voters will have a choice of precinct committeeman. Long-time committeeman David Surbeck is being challenged by Marcus Jouett.

Scott County – Scott County Board incumbent Danny Hatcher faces off against challengers John Simmons, Public Works Superintendent for Winchester and President of Scott-Morgan-Greene Water Cooperative Steven Grubb.


Scott County – Scott County voters have 3 questions to answer tomorrow on their ballot. The first is whether or not to approve a .1% sales tax to assist with the maintenance and budget of the Scott County Nursing Center in Winchester.

The second question is for folks in the southern half of the county. The Scott County Commissioners are asking voters advice to approve or not the creation of a special service area for Emergency Medical Services for the Winchester EMS. The creation of the special service area would create an ability to create a special taxing district to maintain the service and potentially allow for the hire of full time employees. The Winchester EMS is currently a fully volunteer service with less than 10 people on its roster.

The third question is for Scott County residents living in Road District #2. The district is in the south central portion of the county. The proposal would double the tax on property in the district from 0.33% to 0.66%. The item was put on the ballot following a petition from district commissioner Eric Whicker. The purpose of the proposed tax increase is to keep up with inflation and rising road maintenance costs.

Morgan & Sangamon Counties – The final ballot question comes to voters in both Morgan & Sangamon Counties who fall within the boundaries of the New Berlin school district. The district is asking if bonds can be issued for approximately $23.5 million in order to rehabilitate the Jr./Sr. High School Building. Superintendent Jill Larson told WLDS back in February that the referendum would not create a tax increase to members of the district.