Primary contests for Congress take shape. Who's running?

  • Candidates lined up in Springfield today to file petitions to get on the primary election ballots.

      Candidates lined up in Springfield today to file petitions to get on the primary election ballots. Mike Riopell | Staff Photographer

Updated 11/23/2015 11:38 AM

Illinois contenders for U.S. Senate wasted no time trying to get on the primary election ballots today, and suburban races for the U.S. House are starting to officially shape up.

On the first day candidates can apply to get on the ballot for the March primary, Republican IT consultant James Marter of Oswego filed to challenge U.S. Sen. Mark Kirk of Highland Park.


And on the Democratic side, U.S. Rep. Tammy Duckworth of Hoffman Estates and former Chicago Urban League chief Andrea Zopp both turned in petition signatures to get on the ballot for U.S. Senate.

Candidates have until Nov. 30 to turn in their paperwork, so Democratic state Sen. Napoleon Harris of Harvey still has time to join the race.

As expected, two Democrats filed for a chance to take on Republican U.S. Rep. Bob Dold of Kenilworth in the 10th District, set to be one of the most competitive campaigns in the country.

Democrat Brad Schneider of Deerfield wants another shot at Dold after beating him in 2012 and losing last year. In the primary, he'll face Highland Park Mayor Nancy Rotering, who also filed today.

The 10th District includes the North Shore, much of central Lake County and parts of Wheeling, Mount Prospect, Des Plaines and Buffalo Grove.

The race to replace Duckworth in the northwest suburban 8th District could draw a crowded primary field. On Monday, Democrats Mike Noland of Elgin and Raja Krishnamoorthi of Schaumburg filed paperwork, as did Republican DuPage County Board member Peter DiCianni of Elmhurst. Additional candidates are expected in that race.

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The 8th District covers much of Northwest Cook and northeastern DuPage counties, stretching from Buffalo Grove to Oakbrook Terrace and from Elgin to Des Plaines.

In the coming weeks, candidates can challenge the validity of one another's petitions, trying to kick each other off the ballot. So the races could remain in flux for a while.

In the 6th District, U.S. Rep. Peter Roskam of Wheaton has drawn a Republican challenger in Gordon Kinzler of Glen Ellyn. Democrat Robert Marshall of Burr Ridge has also filed in the 6th, a C-shaped district that wraps from Lake Zurich to Downers Grove and includes southeastern McHenry, eastern Kane and central DuPage counties.

Two Republicans have filed to challenge Democratic U.S. Rep. Jan Schakowsky of Evanston in the 9th District. David Earl Williams III of Chicago will try again after losing a primary bid last year. Joan Lasonde of Wilmette has filed, as well.


The 9th stretches from Lake Michigan to Arlington Heights.

So far, Democratic U.S. Rep. Bill Foster of Naperville has drawn just one opponent in the 11th District, Republican DuPage County Board member Tonia Khouri of Wheaton, who has been campaigning for months.

The 11th District includes parts of Aurora, Naperville and Joliet.

And Republican U.S. Rep. Randy Hultgren of Winfield has drawn two potential Democratic challengers in the 14th District, Jim Walz of Gurnee and John Hosta of Spring Grove.

The large 14th District wraps around the far suburbs and extends west to DeKalb.

Conservative radio host and former congressman Joe Walsh had said he'd consider a bid against Hultgren or Kirk, but filed for neither Monday.

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