Democrats speculate about 2018 Illinois Governor election

Jun 13, 2016

Gov. Bruce Rauner

As the Illinois government budget stalemate continues, Democrats are thinking about who might challenge Governor Bruce Rauner in 2018.   Among the Democrats who might be interested are former governor Pat Quinn.  He lost all but one of Illinois' 102 counties to Rauner two years ago, but has lately made a public push to get back into politics. 

Another possibility: Christopher Kennedy, son of Bobby Kennedy and former chairman of the University of Illinois Board of Trustees.  Kennedy met recently with U.S. Senator Dick Durbin. Durbin says he told Kennedy to "move around the state” to get to know people. But he also says Democrats ought to keep their focus on Illinois' immediate crisis.

"The only thing I’ve said is all this speculation about who’s going to run for governor in 30 months — for goodness’ sake, cool it. We’ve got a budget crisis that needs to be solved today."

Durbin himself has been mentioned as a potential challenger to Gov. Rauner. He says he’s got a “great job” representing Illinois in Washington and that his "plans do not include running for any other office."