Republican candidate for governor Bill Brady said Monday he does not plan to push a conservative social agenda if elected, with the exception of legislation requiring parental notification of teens seeking abortions.
"I don't think we've laid out an agenda in this campaign that deals with that," the Bloomington state senator said at a Daily Herald editorial endorsement interview.
"Parental notification is the only thing we think immediately on the books that needs to be done."
He said he is focused almost entirely on the economy.
"I have my personal beliefs. ... We all have our personal beliefs," Brady said. "My agenda is about rebuilding Illinois' economy and bringing integrity back to the government."
Legislation requiring doctors to notify the parents or guardians of teens under 18 seeking abortions was approved by the General Assembly in 1995. The law, stuck in a lengthy court battle, has never been in effect. Surrounding states, including Wisconsin, Indiana, Michigan and Missouri, require parental consent.
Brady said he believes 80 percent of Illinois residents "agree with wanting parental notification."
He opposes abortion in the cases of rape and incest, making an exception if the life of the mother is at stake.
He also opposes both gay marriages and civil unions, agreements legally recognized to give gay and lesbian partners rights and benefits.
Brady said he considers both options "the same thing." He believes couples "can still have rights without civil unions."
He opposes additional gun control restrictions and supports concealed carry.
Democratic Gov. Pat Quinn has signaled that attacking Brady's social stances may be a key strategy in the remaining weeks of the close race.
Quinn late last week released a new video, "Quinn and Women," featuring 9th District U.S. Rep. Jan Schakowsky, women and children from around the state.
The video called a vote for Quinn "critically important to the women of Illinois, especially in contrast to Brady, who has a very extreme record.
Quinn last week said he believed civil unions would be passed into law by the time "Christmas comes around."
If that happens, Brady said, he would not move to overturn the legislation.
"The legislature would have spoken," he said.
Quinn, along with supporting civil unions, favors abortion rights and gun restrictions.
Despite calling the economy a top priority, both candidates have been criticized for their vague plans to fix the state's budget mess.
Quinn supports an income tax hike to fund education, a proposal he calls "honest." He has not said what he plans to cut from the budget.
Brady calls for cutting a "dime on every dollar" of the state's budget, followed by an audit conducted by the auditor general and a "redefining of priorities."
Brady said the "legislative process will determine the state's agenda on social issues."
Lawmakers "will bring those to the governor or they will not," he said.
On the political spectrum, he gauged himself as "center right."