CHICAGO (AP/WTWO/WAWV) — Illinois Republicans have chosen conservative state Sen. Darren Bailey to take on Democratic Gov. J.B. Pritzker for governor this fall.
Bailey defeated five other Republicans on Tuesday to win the nomination. Pritzker, who easily defeated a largely unknown candidate, is seeking his second term. Bailey is a farmer from Xenia. He is a staunch abortion opponent who raised his statewide profile by opposing restrictions Pritzker put in place during the coronavirus pandemic.
Former President Donald Trump endorsed Bailey on Saturday. That support may hurt Bailey in a general election for a state where voters rejected Trump by double digits in 2016 and 2020.
“I will never waiver under pressure, I will never stop fighting for you and the future of our state, but friends, I don’t want you to just believe in me, I need you to believe in Illinois. When friends ask us where we’re from I want you to be proud to say ‘We are from Illinois’.” said Bailey during his speech to supporters in Effingham.