Bruce Rauner wins GOP nomination for Ill. governor - Boston News, Weather, Sports | FOX 25 | MyFoxBoston

Bruce Rauner wins GOP nomination for Ill. governor

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Ill. Sen. Bill Brady, Ill. Sen. Kirk Dillard, businessman Bruce Rauner and Ill. Treasurer Dan Rutherford. Ill. Sen. Bill Brady, Ill. Sen. Kirk Dillard, businessman Bruce Rauner and Ill. Treasurer Dan Rutherford.
Gov. Pat Quinn. Gov. Pat Quinn.
CHICAGO (FOX 32 News) -

Voters nominated Bruce Rauner in Tuesday's primary to be the Republican candidate for governor in the November election. Rauner will take on incumbent Democrat Gov. Pat Quinn.

With a hunger to reclaim the governor's office, Republican voters set out Tuesday to shake up Illinois' Democratic-dominated political order, energized by candidates' talk of taking on unions, unseating "career politicians" and righting the state's troubled finances.

The GOP candidates on the ballot were State Senator Bill Brady, State Senator Kirk Dillard, businessman Bruce Rauner and State Treasurer Dan Rutherford.


State Senator Bill Brady calls himself the only reliable republican in the race for governor. He hoped that voter turnout will turn the tide in his favor.

Brady voted Tuesday afternoon in his hometown of Bloomington, where he grew up and still lives.

This was Brady's third time running for governor. He narrowly beat Kirk Dillard to win the Republican nomination in 2010, but then lost the governor's race to Pat Quinn by more than 32,000 votes.

Brady, 52, is a wealthy real estate developer and investor. He is co-owner of Brady Homes, one of Central Illinois' largest builders, which was founded by his father.

Brady began his political career as a state representative, serving in the Illinois House from 1993-2001. He has served in the state Senate since 2002.

Brady is a social conservative. He attended Central Catholic High School in Bloomington and went to college at Illinois Wesleyan University. He and his wife Nancy have three children.

On the issues, Brady is pro-life, supports traditional marriage, is a strong supporter of the 2nd Amendment and concealed carry.

He has campaigned on term limits for state lawmakers, letting the State's income tax hike expire in 2015 and on pension reform.

He hoped the third time running for governor is the charm.

State Senator Kirk Dillard took heat this campaign season for getting money and endorsements from service and teachers unions.

Dillard promised that support would not cloud his judgment if elected. It certainly gave him a last minute boost in the polls on Tuesday.

Dillard lost the Republican primary for governor by just 193 votes in 2010, one of the slimmest margins in statewide electoral history. Four years later, Dillard said that narrow loss has made him a better candidate.

"Illinois is broken, and Illinois isn't working," Dillard said. "I am tested and prepared to lead the state to the change it so desperately needs."

Tuesday polls showed Dillard trailed Republican frontrunner Bruce Rauner by double digits, but ahead of the other two Republicans in the race. Rauner has outspent Dillard by a margin of 16-1.

Dillard spent 32 years in the state senate representing the western suburbs, and previously worked as chief of staff to former governor Jim Edgar, who has been stumping for Dillard on the campaign trail.

"This election is still up for grabs. It is not over," Edgar said. "It won't be over until they count the votes."

Historically a moderate - who even cut an ad for then-presidential candidate Barack Obama - Dillard has moved to the right in this campaign, yet has received support from Illinois labor unions which he said have been unfairly demonized by Rauner.

"You can't beat Pat Quinn with a nominee who's so close to Democrats that he vacations with Rahm Emanuel," Dillard said of Rauner.

Multimillionaire venture capitalist Bruce Rauner came into Tuesday's primary as a favorite among the GOP candidates in the polls.

"This is our election," Rauner said Tuesday. "We're going to sweep Pat Quinn to the dust bin of Illinois history."

Bruce Rauner prides himself on being a business leader and "not" a seasoned politician.

Rauner and his running mate told the crowd at a Get Out the Vote rally that it's going to take a good business plan to restore good government in Illinois.

"No. 1, we want more jobs and a booming economy," Rauner said. "No. 2, more jobs and lower spending in Springfield. No. 3, great education - great public schools and great vocational training everywhere in Illinois. No. 4, term limits - eight years and out in Springfield."

Rauner and his wife voted early near their home in Winnetka.

This will be a record race in the state. Rauner had nearly $14 million in his campaign chest. He spent $6 million of his own money, making it the most expensive run for governor in Illinois history.

State Treasurer Dan Rutherford fought damaging allegations in this primary race. He decided to stay in the race after a former employee accused him of sexual harassment.

Before getting elected State Treasurer in 2010, Dan Rutherford served in the state senate and the Illinois house. The Pontiac native is the only candidate among the four Republicans to have won a statewide office, which he hopes gives him a leg up among voters.

He calls himself a "reasonable Republican" on social issues, voting to legalize civil unions, while opposing gay marriage. On fiscal matters, he won't rule out extending the state's income tax increase and called the pension overhaul unconstitutional.

But his stance on the issues have been overshadowed by a lawsuit filed by Edward Michalowski, one of his former top aides.

Michalowski claimed Rutherford sexually harassed him and forced him to do political work on state time. Rutherford claims Bruce Rauner's supporters manipulated the lawsuit's timing and impact. He strongly denies the allegations.

"I did not do these things," Rutherford said. "These things are three and two-and-three years old, and now they're coming up just on the eve of an election."

Rutherford voted in Livingston County Tuesday afternoon, pulling a Republican ballot and leaving without taking questions from reporters.

Republicans haven't held the Illinois governor's office since 2003 when Democrat Rod Blagojevich -- now in prison for corruption -- took office, and Democrats have almost total control of other statewide offices and the Illinois House and Senate.

Quinn, who was Blagojevich's lieutenant governor and assumed the office after his boss was booted amid a corruption scandal, faced lesser-known challenger Tio Hardiman in Tuesday's primary.

Quinn, seeking his second full term, was expected to easily win the Democratic nomination. Some voters said Tuesday that they liked Quinn, whose administration has avoided major scandals -- unlike his two predecessors who went to prison.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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