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updated: 4/16/2014 9:59 PM

Lake County GOP chooses new leader

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  • Lake County Republicans elected former Warren Township GOP Chairman Mike Amrozowicz as their new leader Wednesday night in Wadsworth.

       Lake County Republicans elected former Warren Township GOP Chairman Mike Amrozowicz as their new leader Wednesday night in Wadsworth.
    Russell Lissau | Staff Photographer

 
 

Lake County's Republican Party has a new leader.

Former Warren Township GOP Chairman Mike Amrozowicz unseated Wauconda Township's Bob Cook during the party's biennial convention at the Midlane Golf Resort in Wadsworth.

Lake County's Democratic Party's leadership remains unchanged.

In their own conference, held simultaneously in Gurnee, the Democrats re-elected state Sen. Terry Link as their chairman. The Waukegan Democrat has held that post for 22 years.

Link had no opposition, which has been the case for years.

The Republicans, on the other hand, had three candidates to choose from when the night began.

Cook -- the GOP leader since 2010 -- faced challenges from Amrozowicz and Lake County Circuit Court Clerk Keith Brin.

In the first round of voting, Cook came out on top, followed by Amrozowicz and Brin. But Cook didn't have at least 50 percent of the vote, so a second ballot was required.

Before the second vote, Brin dropped out of the race and asked his supporters to back Amrozowicz.

Amrozowicz won the second ballot handily. In his victory speech, he praised Cook and Brin.

"You're both class acts," Amrozowicz said.

Lake County Clerk Willard Helander was among the speakers at the GOP event Wednesday night.

"We all have one common goal, even as we are divided -- that we need to see more red in Illinois," Helander said.

Party conventions are held every two years to choose a chairman, who recruits candidates and helps coordinate campaigns. Precinct committeemen cast weighted votes that represent the number of Republican or Democratic ballots pulled in the most recent primary election.

The Democrats met at the Lake County Federation of Teachers Hall in Gurnee.

After Link's win, Democratic activist Pete Couvall summed up the re-elected chairman's priority moving forward.

"Get out the vote," Couvall said in a telephone interview. "That's going to be our first order of business. Get out the vote."

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