Aurora Mayor Richard Irvin (R-IL) announced that he would be entering the Illinois gubernatorial race on Monday.
Irvin will be up against incumbent Democrat J.B. Pritzker. He was previously elected as the first Black mayor of Aurora, Illinois’ second-largest city as of 2017. Irvin is the fifth candidate seeking the GOP spot for the November election.
According to U.S. News, Irvin’s running mate will be Representative Avery Bourne, a Republican legislator from Morrisonville, IL. She was the youngest lawmaker in state history when she was appointed in 2015. She has since become the assistant Republican leader in the House. Irvin is an Army veteran and former prosecutor. As mayor he cut spending, spurred economic growth, and eased property taxes.
If Irvin is elected, he would become the first black governor of Illinois. He is likely to face some backlash for times when he has supported Democrats, including the current governor.
However, Irvin said in a statement, “Where J.B. Pritzker has failed in Illinois, I have succeeded in Aurora. As the next governor of Illinois, I will be tough on criminals, put our state on a sound fiscal path that doesn’t rely on tax hikes and fight the corrupt politicians who have run our state for decades.”
The partisan primary has been delayed from March to June 28th as a result of the 2020 Census delay and the pandemic. Irvin is up against state Senator Darren Bailey, businessman Gary Rabine, former state Sen. Paul Schimpf, and equity investor Jesse Sullivan.
The Democrat Party of Illinois quickly went in on the candidates. Democratic Party Executive Director Abby Witt said, “Voters will not tolerate a slate of candidates whose only goal is to return us to the Rauner years of budget impasses, credit downgrades, draconian service cuts, and governmental crisis.”
However, billionaire Kenneth Griffin, CEO of Citadel, has promised he’s “all in” to support conservatives in beating Governor Pritzker.
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