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A Peek Into the Governor's Race

By Amy Hart in News on Dec 5, 2005 8:42PM


State Republicans met here on Friday to discuss who will be their party’s best chance of reclaiming Illinois governor’s mansion next year. Not surprisingly, a Republican poll shows Treasurer Judy Baar Topinka leading her fellow GOP candidates, as well as maintaining a 39 to 35 percent lead over Governor Blagojevich.

Here is the breakdown of all Republicans who have announced plans to run in the primary: Topinka, 39%; Oberweis, 12%; Rauschenberger, 6%; Gidwitz, 3.5%; Brady, 3%.

Chicagoist watched a Dick Kay interview of Topinka over the weekend and noticed that she mentioned Jim Edgar’s name as often as possible, and referred to herself as a financial conservative and social moderate. Of course, paying for social programs might require loosening the purse strings a bit.

On the Democrats side, Blago is most likely to not have a serious contender in the primary, as most challengers would be scared away by his campaign war chest of over $14 million. Still, that’s not stopping his supporters from trying to force out a competitor. Two Blago lovers sent prospective Democratic challenger Edwin Eisendrath, an ex-Alderman (43rd) and Chair of City Housing, a letter urging him to stay out of the race. Is Blago starting to get worried?

Eisendrath hasn’t decided whether or not to run. Chicagoist feels his decision is moot, as the race will be Blago against Topinka.