Reformer Wins Rahm Primary

Without cash or unions, Quigley triumphs in crowded race
By Jason Farago,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 4, 2009 6:17 AM CST
Cook County Commissioner Mike Quigley celebrates with his wife Barbara in Chicago, Tuesday, March 3, 2009. He triumphed in a crowded field to fill Rahm Emanuel's House seat.   (AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast)
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(Newser) – An Illinois official who ran on a message of reform won yesterday's Democratic primary to fill Rahm Emanuel's vacant seat in Congress, reports the Chicago Tribune. Mike Quigley, commissioner of Cook County, took 22% of the vote in a crowded field despite lacking both campaign cash and union support. "I'm in shock," Quigley said at his acceptance speech.

"After all the recent embarrassments, this was first chance that the voters had to voice their desire for change and they spoke loud and clear," Quigley said. Low turnout may have helped Quigley defeat his closest rival, a state representative with backing from labor and ward bosses. He is almost certain to defeat Republican and Green challengers in the April 7 special election.