Former Illinois Treasurer Alexi Giannoulias has apparently won statewide office for the second time, defeating Republican Rep. Dan Brady in a hotly-contested race to become the new secretary of state.
Brady conceded the race in a phone call to Giannoulias on Tuesday night, his campaign said in a press release.
Giannoulias has not yet claimed victory, and neither NBC News nor the Associated Press has called the race yet.
“Tonight starts a new chapter in public life for me,” Brady said during a concession speech. “I just called my opponent Alexi Giannoulias and congratulated him.”
Giannoulias, who served one term as treasurer before being defeated in the 2010 U.S. Senate race against Republican Mark Kirk, will replace Jesse White next year, with White retiring after a career that spanned 24 years in office.
Giannoulias most recently has worked in finance, serving as an executive at BNY Mellon Wealth Management. He also serves on the Chicago Public Library Board, a position he was selected to fill in 2018.
He faced controversy during his time in office as the treasurer, with the Bright Start college savings program experiencing significant financial losses during his tenure in office as a result of the Great Recession in 2008. Giannoulias has also been criticized for loans made by Broadway Bank, which was founded by his father.
During the campaign, Giannoulias argued for new ethics laws within the secretary of state’s office, and pledged to modernize the office while enhancing services like libraries, infrastructure spending, and fighting against climate change.
He also promised to protect voting rights, saying that laws passed by conservative-dominated legislatures hindered access to the ballot in Republican states.
Brady, the deputy House minority leader in Springfield, has represented the 105th district since 2013 and has served in the House since 2001. His district covers portions of Bloomington and Normal.
The Republican ran on a platform that emphasized streamlining services offered by the secretary of state’s office, using mobile locations to help bring services directly to customers while easing lines and hassles at DMV offices across the state.
He also pledged to lower the minimum age of signup for the state’s organ and tissue donation program from 18 to 16, and said that he wanted to provide better driver’s education for young people.
Finally, Brady ran on a promise to allocate additional funding to local libraries in an effort to provide educational resources to residents of all ages.
For the first time in nearly a quarter century, the Illinois secretary of state’s office will be run by a Republican, as state Rep. Dan Brady has defeated former Treasurer Alexi Giannoulias in the race to replace Jesse White.
Brady, who has represented parts of Bloomington and Normal in the General Assembly since 2001, will be the first Republican to serve as secretary of state since George Ryan was elected governor in 1998.
Region: Chicago,Local,City: Chicago
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November 8, 2022 at 09:09PM