In what could be a step toward an anticipated gubernatorial campaign, Illinois State Treasurer Dan Rutherford posted a survey question online Sunday that asks visitors whether they would support him in a run for governor.
The question appeared on the downstate Republican's website, Facebook page and via his Twitter account. Underneath the question on Rutherford's website was a statement from him about the state's current fiscal woes.
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"Now is the time for leaders to act with conviction and courage," the statement reads. "Through wise stewardship, we can eliminate our massive debt, fund our liabilities, build an environment that job-creators are seeking and provide financial security for taxpayers."
Rutherford, of Chenoa, said Sunday that he posted the question as a preliminary information-gathering move. He said it should not be considered a formal announcement of his intentions regarding the 2014 race for governor.
"A run is very much an option that's on the table, but we won't be making a final decision on that until after the first of the year," he said. "In the meantime, we thought this would be a good way to see what kind of support might be out there."
Rutherford said that within nine minutes of posting the question on Sunday morning, roughly 40 people responded.
"I think that's pretty good for relatively early on a Sunday morning," he said, adding that people have been encouraging him throughout the past year to run for governor.
Rutherford's name is one of several that have popped up in recent discussions of potential Republican gubernatorial candidates in 2014. So far, the only Republican who has formally announced an intention to run is state Sen. Kirk Dillard of Hinsdale.