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Illinois Senate approves bill changing how Lieutenant Governor is picked

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April 28, 2010

By Kyle Maichle

SPRINGFIELD, Illinois: The Illinois State Senate unanimously approved a bill on April 27, 2010, that would allow candidates for Governor of Illinois to have a running mate run alongside them during the primary election[1].

Illinois House Bill 5820, would eliminate the current process of how the Lieutenant Governor of Illinois is nominated[2]. Under the current system, candidates for Governor and Lieutenant Governor run separately in the primary and in the general election run as a team[2].

The need for the bill came after the February 2010 primary election in Illinois in which Chicago pawnbroker Scott Lee Cohen won the Democratic nomination for Lieutenant Governor. Days later after the win, Cohen dropped out of the race due to pressure from Democratic Party officials over past legal issues[2]. Under the current system, there has been some uncommon parings for Governor and Lt. Governor with one example in 1986 when Adlai Stevenson refused the Democrat gubernatorial nomination[3], later to run as an independent over his dissatisfaction for his potential Democratic running mate[2].

The bill is expected to be signed into law by Governor of Illinois Pat Quinn[2].

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