Six key races to watch on Election night


CHICAGO – Whether it’s congressional, state or local, Illinoisians will find a number of key races on the ballot when they head to the polls for the Illinois Primary Election on Tuesday June 28th.

WGN Political Analyst Paul Lisnek shared the six races he thinks you should watch with WGN News Now and his list is below:

Governor: There are several candidates vying for the GOP ticket to face Democratic Governor J.B. Pritzker. Lisnek said Aurora Mayor Richard Irvin was initially a front-runner but has lost some momentum to down-state candidate Darren Bailey who’s taken the lead in recent polls. Lisnek adds to also keep an eye on conservative candidate Jesse Sullivan who’s been creeping up in the polls.

Secretary of State: In the Secretary of State’s Race, the Republican candidates are Representative Dan Brady and former U.S. Attorney John Milhiser facing off.Lisnek said both are conservative, but Brady is currently doing better in the polls.

There are four candidates on the Democratic side, current Chicago City Clerk, Anna Valencia, former State Treasurer, Alexi Giannoulias, Alderman David Moore and entrepreneur Sidney Moore. Lisnek said Valencia, Giannoulias and Alderman Moore are the three front-runners in the race but adds all of the negative ads in the race may give Alderman Moore an advantage.

1st Congressional District: There are 17 candidates hoping to replace outgoing U.S. Representative Bobby Rush when he retires. Lisnek said the front-fronners are Karin Norrington-Reaves who Rush himself has endorsed, plus Jonathan Jackson, son of civil rights leader, Jesse Jackson, Alderwoman Pat Dowel from the third ward,  and State Senator Jaqueline Collins.

3rd Congressional District: This new 3rd Congressional District was drawn so a Latino Congressperson would be sent to Washington. Lisnek said the two front-runners in a tough race for the Democratic ticket there are State Representative Delia Ramirez and Alderman Gilbert Villegas.

6th Congressional District: In the 6th Congressional District, two sitting congressmembers, Representative Sean Casten and Congresswoman Marie Newman, are pitted against each other because of the way the district was drawn. Lisnek said both are liberal, progressive, and even allies who get along.

Cook County Assessor: In the Cook County Assessor’s race current assessor Fritz Kaegi faces Kari Steele who currently sits on the water reclamation district. Kaegi has served one term and has increased property taxes on businesses while keeping rates low for homeowners. Lisnek said Kaegi’s also come under fire for some processes, but the bottom line is voters have to decide if one term is enough or give someone new a chance.

You can hear more of Lisnek’s in-depth analysis of the races to watch in the video above and see interviews with the candidates by going to

WGN will air and livestream a “WGN News Election Special” with results of the 2022 Illinois General Primary Tuesday at 7 p.m.

You can to go to the Illinois Board of Elections to find the location of your polling place.

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