24 September, 2009

Illinois Senate Race 2010

We're at least a good five months away from the Illinois primaries, but at this point I'm pretty sure the race is going to come down to Alexi Giannoulias for the Democrats, and Mark Kirk for the Republicans. According to all the polls I've seen, both gentlemen are substantially ahead among likely voters in their respective parties. However, Mark Kirk is essentially running unopposed, whilst Giannoulias has two semi-major opponents in Chris Kennedy (who is related to the Kennedy family of Massachusetts) and Cheryle Jackson (president of the Chicago Urban League). Whilst I sincerely doubt either challenger will narrow the gap between them and Giannoulias, they might make it enough of a fight he'll have to spend significant capital to secure the nomination. As for the Republicans, I do not think a serious challenger will emerge to topple Kirk from the nomination; the Republicans in Illinois are hungry for a win, and I think most of them realize that Kirk offers them their best chance. Thus, I think they will solidify behind him early.

And if the early Rasmussen polling is any indication, the Republicans have reason to be hopeful in any Kirk vs. Giannoulias matchup. But its still far too early to have any real sense of which way this race is going to go.

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