By Mark Wachtler
October 30, 2014. Chicago. (ONN) It’s that time again - time to make our predictions for the 2014 General Election. While our track record is impressive, we don’t always call the outcome exactly right. In a democracy with a secret ballot, anything can happen. This election, we’ve really gone out on a limb. If it’s possible for two candidates in the same race to be winners, then that’s our prediction in the race for Illinois Governor. We predict that incumbent Pat Quinn will receive the most votes, but the Libertarians and their candidate Chad Grimm will be the real winners.
Could Republican Stefanie Linares upset Illinois Senate President John Cullerton? We think so. Image courtesy of getvamos.com.
Welcome to Illinois’ 3-party system
If there is one result from this Tuesday’s election that will have the biggest impact on Illinois voters in the coming years, it may not be the outcome of the Governor’s race. Instead, it will be official declaration that Illinois is now a three-party system - Democrat, Republican and Libertarian. Once a candidate from any party receives 5% or more of the vote in a statewide election, that party and its candidates are recognized as a ‘major party’ in future elections.
The benefit, in addition to more money, more exposure, more credibility and more assistance from the Board of Elections, is that the party’s candidates no longer have to collect 20,000-plus ballot access signatures just to run for office. They will need to collect only a few hundred like their Republican and Democrat counterparts.
That means for the next two election cycles, Illinois Republicans won’t just have the Libertarians to deal with in five statewide races. There will be dozens and dozens of Libertarian candidates from one end of the ballot to the other and one end of the state to the other. Because we at the Illinois Herald predict that the current Libertarian candidate for Illinois Governor, Chad Grimm, will shock the political establishment and receive more than double the number of votes needed to break the two-party glass ceiling. And if he doesn’t do it, one of the other statewide Libertarian candidates surely will.
Illinois Governor’s race
The ‘tangibles’, like nearly every poll in the state, insist that Republican Bruce Rauner will win the race for Illinois Governor next Tuesday. Incumbent Democrat Pat Quinn is literally the most unpopular Governor in America. Illinois has some of the worst economic numbers in the nation. The Chicago Machine’s own President Obama is nearly as unpopular. And there is going to be a nationwide Republican tidal wave of victories from coast to coast, giving the GOP control of both houses of Congress in Washington.
But the ‘intangibles’ are seemingly too much and too many for the Republican challenger to overcome. Billionaire Bruce Rauner and the Illinois GOP are somehow losing what should have been an easy win. And here’s how it’s happening. Keep in mind, in 2010 Gov. Quinn beat his Republican opponent by 32,000 votes. There were 3.7 million votes cast and five candidates on the ballot, including a Green, a Libertarian and an independent. Also keep in mind, Pat Quinn trailed by 3 to 8 percent in nearly every poll prior to Election Day, but he won anyway.
"The news shouldn't be left wing or right wing, conservative or liberal. It should be the news. It should be independent" - Mark Wachtler, Illinois Herald owner/editor
With the Illinois Governors race currently a dead heat, the Illinois Herald is going to go out on a limb and predict Governor Pat Quinn will win re-election by a larger margin that anyone currently foresees. And Libertarian Chad Grimm will shock the political landscape by garnering over ten percent, giving the Libertarian Party ‘major party status’ statewide for at least the next four years.
In other races, both nationally and here in Illinois, we predict the results will be as most currently expect them - a Republican tidal wave will sweep the GOP into power in both houses of Congress, including many races here in Illinois. Locally, Republicans will barely make a dent into the Democrat super-majority, but will retain their lone statewide office and even pick up a couple seats in the State Legislature. If readers want one crazy, wild-eyed, long shot prediction - watch for Republican Stefanie Linares to upset Illinois Senate President John Cullerton.
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