Dem Quinn clings to thin margin in Ill. gov. race

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By DEANNA BELLANDI
The Associated Press
Wednesday, November 3, 2010; 2:55 AM

CHICAGO -- Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn is clinging to an extremely thin margin over Republican challenger Bill Brady, even as voters in the state and around the country toss Democrats out of office.

With 99 percent of precincts reporting, Quinn and the state senator each have 46 percent of the vote. Quinn's lead just more than 8,500 votes out of more than 3.6 million cast.

He's holding on after at least 10 other Democratic governors were been voted out of office. Republicans in Illinois also have claimed President Barack Obama's old Senate seat and a majority of the state's congressional delegation.

Quinn is predicting victory, while acknowledging there are more votes to count. Brady isn't conceding, saying the race won't be decided until later Wednesday at the earliest.

THIS IS A BREAKING NEWS UPDATE. Check back soon for further information. AP's earlier story is below.

CHICAGO (AP) - Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn clung to an extremely thin margin over Republican challenger Bill Brady early Wednesday as voters in the state and around the country tossed Democrats out of office in a GOP wave.

With 98 percent of precincts reporting, Quinn and the state senator from Bloomington both had 46 percent. Quinn's lead was just more than 9,100 votes out of more than 3.6 million cast.

He was holding on while at least 10 other Democratic governors were voted out, and Republicans in Illinois claimed the Senate seat once held by President Barack Obama along with a majority of the state's congressional delegation.

Quinn, who ran for a full term of his own after taking over when his former boss Rod Blagojevich was ousted from office, cautiously declared victory early Wednesay even as he acknowledged there were more votes to be counted.

"I know there are votes out there in Cook County and elsewhere, and I want to make sure they're counted, but when all is said and done we'll end up on top with the most votes, a majority," he told supporters at a downtown Chicago hotel.

In Bloomington, Brady told supporters the race would not be decided until later Wednesday at the earliest.

"We want to make sure every voter in the state of Illinois has a right to have their vote counted and we're going to make sure that happens," Brady said, adding that he was "optimistic."


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© 2010 The Associated Press

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