Endorsement: Lewis for Illinois Senate Dist. 24
This editorial has been modified since its original online publication to clarify the phrasing of a paragrah relating to the residency of candidate Lauren Nowak.
Under the new legislative map, Bartlett Republican Seth Lewis found himself in the same House district as fellow GOP state Rep. Amy Grant.
Rather than run against Grant in the primary, Lewis chose to pursue the 24th state Senate District seat.
Lewis didn't have an opponent in the Republican primary. On the Democratic side, the field was empty, but over the summer, Laurie Nowak, who also is a Bartlett resident, filed to run for the office after former state Rep. Diane Pappas, whom Lewis defeated in 2020, declined.
The 24th Senate District includes all or parts of Bartlett, Bloomingdale, Carol Stream, Elk Grove Village, Itasca, Naperville, Roselle, Warrenville, Wheaton, Winfield and Wood Dale.
Nowak played no role in the Democratic shenanigans surrounding the new legislative boundaries, but because of the process, her residence isn't actually in the 24th District; it's in the 25th, which is represented by West Chicago Democrat Karina Villa. If Nowak wins the race for the 24th, the law will require her to move to within the district's boundaries, which she has promised to do.
Nowak is a full-time student seeking a master's degree in public policy and administration. In 2012, at 25, she became the youngest woman elected to the DuPage County Board, but she lost a reelection bid two years later.
Lewis, an insurance agent, was a Bartlett Fire Protection District trustee before he was elected to the state House.
Nowak is a progressive with some ideas we support, and Lewis is a conservative with some ideas we oppose. They predictably have opposite stances on abortion rights and the SAFE-T Act.
But Lewis has co-sponsored legislation with numerous suburban Democrats on other issues, so he's proven he can find common ground. Lewis is endorsed.