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Topinka Is In

By Amy Hart in News on Nov 7, 2005 3:06PM


First she was in, then she was out, but now she is back in. Republican State Treasurer Judy Baar Topinka has decided to run for governor.

Earlier this year it looked like Topinka was sure to enter the race, as her polling showed poor approval ratings of the scandal plagued Governor Rod Blagojevich.

Late this summer Topinka did not want to announce her candidacy until former governor and fellow moderate Jim Edgar made his decision whether or not to challenge Blago. When Edgar decided to stay out of the race, all eyes were on Topinka.

However, early last month it looked like Topinka would not run, as she faced a lack of campaign funds and worried about the bitter primary and general election ahead.

Then in late October came Blago’s newest approval ratings (or lack thereof), followed by the pledge of supporters to give Topinka financial backing if she would run.

Topinka finally announced her intention to run to fellow Republicans over the weekend.

Chicagoist is happy Topinka has decided to throw her hat in the ring. She immediately becomes the Republican front runner as most of the other Republican candidates are social conservatives, whereas Topinka is a moderate whose beliefs are more in line with the majority of Illinois citizens, meaning she presents a more formidable challenge to Blago.

As a Republican source told the Chicago Tribune, “She is absolutely convinced that if she doesn't run, Blagojevich gets re-elected and she's willing to take whatever they throw at her because she's got a good shot to beat him.”