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Fri Mar 5, 2021, 01:25 PM

How Rep. Robin Kelly won the Democratic Party of Illinois chair

With a high-stakes head fake, Rep. Robin Kelly won the 10-day campaign to replace scandalized Mike Madigan as chair of the Democratic Party of Illinois, the first new leader in 23 years.

Kelly beat Ald. Michelle Harris (8th) 51.7% to 48.3% in the Wednesday night balloting among the 36 members of the party's state central committee. This first in generations power change in the party turned into a proxy battle between Sen. Dick Durbin, with Kelly, and Sen Tammy Duckworth and Gov. J.B. Pritzker, up for reelection in 2022, supporting Harris.


Kelly also told me that for the first time in decades, Illinois Democrats with participate fully in Democratic National Committee activities.

Madigan famously wanted nothing to do with the DNC - to the point of not attending the 2018 national DNC meeting in Chicago.


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