Khouri wins GOP nod in 49th House District

Aurora Republican Tonia Khouri decisively won her party's nomination Tuesday in the race to succeed retiring state Rep. Mike Fortner in the 49th Illinois House District.

With all precincts reporting, Khouri collected 5,124 votes, unofficial results show. Her opponent, Nic Zito, received 2,681 votes from DuPage, Cook and Kane counties and the Aurora Election Commission.

Khouri will face West Chicago Democrat Karina Villa in the November election.

Khouri, 48, has served on the DuPage County Board since 2012 and owns Green T Services, a landscaping and home remodeling business. She lost a 2016 bid to oust U.S. Rep. Bill Foster, a Naperville Democrat, from his seat in Congress.

Khouri said she was compelled to run for state office after Fortner joined a group of Republican lawmakers who voted to override Gov. Bruce Rauner's veto of a 32 percent increase in the income tax rate.

"We didn't get pension reform. We didn't get workers' comp reform. We didn't get regulatory reform - nothing," Khouri said during her campaign.

Khouri had questioned Zito's Republican credentials, trying to align him with his father, Greg Zito, a former Democratic lawmaker in the Illinois House and Senate.

Zito, a 28-year-old Wayne Township trustee, helped launch the Rev3 Innovation Center, a co-working space in Naperville.

The 49th district includes parts of Aurora, Bartlett, Batavia, Geneva, Naperville, North Aurora, South Elgin, St. Charles, West Chicago and Wayne.

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