Jun 6, 2022 - Politics

Trail Mix: Illinois congressional primary races to watch

Older politician

Rep. Bobby Rush is not running for another term in Congress. Photo: Drew Angerer/Getty Images

Much of the political attention for Illinois' upcoming primary has gone to statewide contests, but there are some major races for U.S. Congress on both sides of the aisle.

Why it matters: After the 2020 census, Illinois lost one congressional seat due to slow population growth.

  • The state's Democratic-controlled Legislature redrew Illinois' congressional districts last year, which pit some incumbents against each other in the primary.

Here are some of the congressional district races to watch:

1st: 17 Democrats are vying to replace retiring Rep. Bobby Rush.

  • Jonathan Jackson, son of Rev. Jesse Jackson, leads the pack. But he's run into a bit of a scandal as he didn't file his financial disclosures.
  • Powerful names, including State Sen. Jacqueline Collins, Ald. Pat Dowell (3rd) and community activist Jahmal Cole, have also thrown in their hats.

3rd: Four Democrats, including Ald. Gilbert Villegas (36th) and state Rep. Delia Ramirez, are facing off.

  • Villegas, who heads the Latino Caucus in Chicago City Council, snagged the endorsement of former U.S. Rep. Luis Gutierrez, and Ramirez got a nod from current U.S. Rep. Chuy Garcia.

6th: This heavyweight fight pits two Democratic incumbents — Reps. Sean Casten and Marie Newman — against each other. And it's getting chippy.

15th: Two Republican incumbents want to lead this newly drawn downstate district.

  • Rep. Rodney Davis, who currently represents the 13th District, boasts a strong record in Congress and a potential committee chairmanship.
  • But Rep. Mary Miller, who currently represents the 15th, boasts a thumbs up from former President Trump.

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