News & Election Videos

January 05, 2009

Blago sets special election for Rahm's seat

Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich has designated April 7 as the special election date to fill the congressional seat being vacated by incoming White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel. Blagojevich designated March 3 as the date for the primary election.

In such a heavily Democratic district, the March 3 primary will be the more crucial election date.

“I am pleased to set these election dates so that the people of the Fifth Congressional District can have a representative in Congress as quickly as possible,” Blagojevich said in a statement. “With our nation in a recession, we need to ensure that Illinois’ voice is being represented in Washington, D.C. to get our economy back on track.”

The Democratic primary to succeed Emanuel will be highly competitive: Cook County Commissioner Mike Quigley and state Rep. Sara Feigenholtz are two of the leading contenders.

Blagojevich was arrested last month on charges that he attempted to sell President-elect Barack Obama’s Senate seat to the highest bidder. .

-- Alex Isenstadt