Governor Rauner sets preliminary dates for voters to fill vacancy. The post of congressman from Illinois’ 18th congressional district became vacant on Tuesday, March 31. In writs of special election issued on Tuesday, Governor Bruce Rauner set dates of June 8 for the primary election to name two major-party candidates for the seat, and July 24 for the general election to allow voters to make a final selection. The governor’s office acknowledged that necessary time intervals, to allow for Illinois soldiers serving abroad to vote in both elections, could lead to significant changes in these dates.
After the census of 2010, Illinois was allocated 18 congressional districts. Twelve of the districts are based in the Chicago area, and six represent Downstate Illinois. Illinois’ 18th district covers much of central and western Illinois, including portions of the metropolitan regions of Bloomington-Normal, Peoria, and Springfield. Abraham Lincoln used a distant ancestor of this district as his springboard to serve one term in Congress in 1847-1849.