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« Surrogates Take Heat | Blog Home Page | Super Saturday Thread »

Dems Still Counting In IL

The Democratic primary in the 14th District of Illinois isn't over yet, reports the Arlington Daily Herald. We reported yesterday that scientist Bill Foster had defeated 2006 nominee John Laesch by less than a point in the contest to decide the party's nominee for the November general election. While that outcome looks like it will stand, ballots that could matter are still being counted.

Absentee ballots have yet to be counted in Kane, DeKalb and Kendall counties, and Laesch has said he will not concede until all the votes are counted. However, there is a roughly 400-vote margin currently separating the two candidates, and only a total of some 175 absentee ballots in the three counties.

If Laesch, by some miracle, does win, either on the first count or in a recount, the Democratic Party will have picked two different candidates for the same seat. Foster won the simultaneous special primary to become the nominee in the March 8 election to fill the remainder of former Speaker Dennis Hastert's term.

The DCCC had backed Foster over Laesch, if not publicly then privately. Still, it wouldn't be the first time the party's favored candidate didn't make it through a primary. After Democratic activist Carol Shea-Porter beat out State Rep. Jim Craig for the right to face Republican Rep. Jeb Bradley in New Hampshire last year, the DCCC, which had been touting Craig's potential, all but abandoned the district. But in November, Shea-Porter won the seat in one of the biggest upsets of the year.

-- Kyle Trygstad