Endorsements

Our Revolution Illinois is proud to announce our endorsements for the March primary. We have chosen candidates who we believe will fight hardest for the issues Our Revolution stands for.

Our endorsement process included review of an exhaustive candidate questionnaire, an examination of their viability, and their history of supporting progressive causes. In some cases we’ve sent out polls to our constituents to learn their opinions on specific candidates. We also encourage you to research the candidates yourselves before making your own decisions.

March 20, 2018 Democratic Primary endorsements

Daniel Biss

Illinois Governor

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Daniel has taken on the machine throughout his career, and knows how to win. His focus is on long-term, creative solutions for Illinois middle-class families, and fighting for those whose voices are typically ignored.

Litesa Wallace

Lt. Governor

Litesa is a  single mother, an educator, and a fighter for working families. ORIL believes she will fight hard for progressives goals as lieutenant governor.

Marie Newman

U.S. House of Representatives, 3rd District

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Marie Newman is a results-driven small businesswoman, entrepreneur, national nonprofit executive, author, and human rights advocate, Marie Newman has spent her life embracing challenges and working with others on finding solutions.

Jesus "Chuy" Garcia

U.S. House of Representatives, 4th District

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Jesús “Chuy” García has spent most of his life fighting to improve the lives of ordinary people. He emerged as a national leader during his 2015 bid for Mayor of the City of Chicago and continues to be vocal on local and national policy issues. He serves as Commissioner for the 7th District on the Cook County Board.

Ram Villivalam

State Senator, 8th District

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Ram believes we need a new generation of diverse leaders who listen to and represent their communities; he will be an effective, outspoken leader. He is passionate about addressing income inequality, starting with increasing the minimum wage to a $15 per hour. Ram is also advocates for single payer healthcare, protecting our environment, and stronger gun control regulations.

Carol Ammons

State Representative, 103rd District

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Since being elected State Representative in 2014, she has worked to expand economic opportunities for working families, reform the criminal justice system, defend union members, and protect our environment. She has also championed initiatives to generate job growth, reduce income disparities, and end gun violence.

Will Guzzardi

State Representative, 39th District

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Since his election to the House in 2014, Guzzardi has been a champion of progressive causes in Springfield. He passed legislation to raise Illinois's minimum wage to $15 an hour, which was then vetoed by Gov. Rauner. He launched the Tuition Free Illinois campaign and introduced legislation to make public universities and community colleges tuition free for in-state students. He has led the way on legislation to reform the criminal justice system, improve public education, strengthen LGBTQ rights, and protect our state's environment. 

Delia Ramirez

State Representative, 4th District

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An Emerging Fellow of The Chicago Community in 2013, Delia has been a leader in neighborhood and city-wide coalitions for balanced neighborhood development, an elected representative school board, the Fight for $15, Automatic Voter Registration, a 2007 recipient of the “35 under 35” leadership award and La Raza Community Leader award in 2013 – just to name a few of her accomplishments.

Aaron Ortiz

State Representative, 1st District

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A son of immigrants from Durango, Mexico, Aaron represents the makeup of the 1st district. Aaron is a parishioner of St. Clare of Montefalco Church. He is a homeowner and lifelong resident of Gage Park. He attended Nightingale Elementary and Brother Rice High School. His experiences as a young student have guided him in his work helping students at Back of the Yards High School think about their post-graduation future.

Theresa Mah

State Representative, 2nd District

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Theresa’s election to the 2nd District legislative seat made history as she is the first Asian American in the Illinois General Assembly. She is committed to being a unifying leader who represents all 2nd District constituents in Springfield. The 2nd District includes large portions of the Bridgeport, Chinatown, Pilsen, and McKinley Park neighborhoods.

Aaron Ammons

Champaign County Clerk

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Following years of community organizing around the importance of voting, particularly in minority communities, Alderman Aaron Ammons has decided to take a more active role in ensuring Champaign County is a leader in resisting efforts of voter suppression and protecting voter privacy by running for Champaign County Clerk. Aaron would be the first African-American County Clerk in Champaign County.

Mary Rita Luecke

State Representative, 17th District

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Mary Rita Luecke is a long-time civil and human rights activist. She has been a member of the National Lawyers Guild, the nation’s largest progressive bar association, since 1975 and has fought for the rights of disenfranchised peoples, including during the anti-war and anti-apartheid movements. She recently joined Fair Economy Illinois to persuade Cook County to pass minimum wage and sick leave ordinances, then fought to prevent northern suburbs from opting out of those ordinances.

Fritz Kaegi

Cook County Assessor

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Fritz Kaegi believes that government should treat everyone fairly—not give special treatment to the wealthy or politically connected. The Cook County Assessor’s Office needs a leader who is fair and who will make assessments transparently, uncorrupted by influential donors. Kaegi refuses to take political contributions from lawyers or law firms who profit from the current opaque and corrupt system.

Brandon Johnson

Cook County Commissioner, 1st District

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Brandon Johnson is a husband and father who is raising his family on the west side of Chicago in the Austin neighborhood. Brandon and Stacie Johnson have been married for 19 years and have three children: Owen, Ethan and Braedyn. After 20 years as a teacher in Chicago Public Schools, he joined the Chicago Teachers' Union as an organizer. He is running to fight for the poor, protect working families, and ease the burden on middle class families. 

Laurel Prussing

Champaign County Treasurer

Laurel Prussing is an economist who has been elected to a number of public offices – generally as the first woman to hold the seat. She began her community service in the 1970s with an environmental group formed by women. Housewives Involved in Pollution Solutions started recycling programs and helped start recycling businesses in Champaign County. Recycling collection was later adopted by the cities of both Urbana and Champaign.

Alma Anaya

Cook County Commissioner, 7th District

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During her time at the Cook County Board, Alma has worked with churches, community stakeholders and grassroots organizations to provide resources to the constituents of the 7th District. She has organized community fairs and events, including workshops on women’s health, youth employment, veteran affairs and immigrants rights. She has also provided policy research on issues facing the community.

Abdelnasser Rashid

Cook County Commissioner, 17th District

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Abdelnasser Rashid is Deputy Chief of Staff at the office of Cook County Clerk David Orr. He will fight for property tax reform, affordable and quality health care, workers’ rights and other policies that prioritize working and middle class families. A graduate of Harvard University, Abdelnasser lives with his wife and two daughters in Justice, IL.

State Central Committee

Our Revolution Illinois is very excited to announce our endorsement of the State Central Committee slate of candidates! These individuals ran as Bernie Delegates or have been super-Bernie volunteers in our state.

Transforming the party is and has been a major priority of the Our Revolution mission and agenda, and that requires getting progressives into state leadership.

The State Central Committee is the governing body of the Illinois Democratic Party. One male and one female are elected from each congressional district. In our state of Illinois, national DNC members are selected ONLY by the State Central Committee.

This slate of candidates are committed to

  • ‍Transparency about what is happening at the state level
  • Standing up for our values
  • Insisting on democratic deliberation before important votes
  • Opening up participation within the party
  • Listening to the grassroots
  • Representing voters, NOT special interests
  • Pushing for a progressive state party platform
  • Supporting progressive candidates for DNC membership and endorsements
  • Lean on current DNC members to support party reforms (ex. Unity Reform Commission)
  • Helping progressive candidates in our district

This system stays in place only because good people do nothing to try to change it. Support the progressive change we need to transform the leadership of Illinois.

Rebecca Davies

State Central Committeewoman, 3rd Congressional District

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Rebecca Davies was a delegate to the 2016 Democratic Convention for Bernie Sanders. She currently serves on the La Grange Village Environmental Quality Control Commission. Prior to that she was elected to the District 102 School Board. She is the Illinois State Co-coordinator for Progressive Democrats of America and has been active in local, state and federal elections for many years. She currently supports her neighbor, Marie Newman, in her primary challenge to incumbent Dan Lipinski.

Melissa Lindberg

State Central Committeewoman, 5th Congressional District

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Melissa Lindberg has been a part of the leadership of Northside Democracy of America (NDFA) since its founding in 2005. Since 2011, she has served as Chair of the organization (currently Co-chair). NDFA's mission is to elect socially progressive, fiscally responsible, and ethically committed Democrats to all levels of government, and both NDFA and Melissa enthusiastically supported Bernie's campaign for president.

Ross Outten

State Central Committeeman, 5th Congressional District

Website

Running for committeeman in the 5th district is a challenge Ross took on because he believes that before Democrats can defeat Donald Trump and the radical, right wing agenda of the Republican party, they must first make substantive changes and reforms to their own processes and platform. He is proud to join with Melissa Lindberg and committee-person candidates all over Illinois who are standing up for progressive values and vital party reforms. 

Jesse Medina, Jr.

State Central Committeeman, 6th Congressional District

Website

A custodian/maintenance worker in public schools, Jesse Medina, Jr. is a proud blue collar and working class public sector union member. As an elected union steward and member of several union-wide committees in Service Employees International Union (SEIU) Local 73, he is very active in the labor movement. Jesse ran as an Bernie Sanders Delegate during the 2016 Illinois Primary, receiving more votes than any other Sanders candidate in his district. He is the Vice President of the Aurora chapter of the Labor Council for Latin American Advancement (LCLAA) – a national labor union constituency group.

Maggie Wunderly

State Central Committeewoman, 11th Congressional District

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Maggie is running for this position because she believes that the Illinois Democratic Party needs grassroots representation. She wants to open up participation in the party and keep her district informed about what is happening at state level. She feels strongly that the party should always represent the voters, not special interests. She has pledged to stand up for the voters in her district and insist on open democratic deliberation when making important party decisions. She will put her political organizing experience to good use helping local candidates in her district.

Pamella Gronemeyer, M.D.

State Central Committeewoman, 13th Congressional District

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Pamella Gronemeyer, M.D. is a physician and a small business owner. She takes pride in the fact that her hard work insures that her employees have excellent health insurance for themselves and their families without paying any premium or deductible. She is an involved single payer activist who works nonstop for its implementation. She is the Co-President of PNHP IL and the Vice President of the board for the Illinois Single Payer Coalition. As an activist, she is the organizer of a progressive group in Edwardsville, IL that was begun in 2005. She has been a longtime member of PDA and is the Co-State Coordinator for PDA IL.

Alison Squires

State Central Committeewoman, 14th Congressional District

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Alison is running for State Central Committee because she feels the Democratic Party needs to be more welcoming to progressive candidates. Alison believes the Democratic Party needs to represent voters, not special interests. Illinois’ State Central Committee selects the state’s Democratic Party chair, vice chairs, the DNC members that represent our state, and writes our state’s platform. Alison would ensure that platform would include progressive issues such as Medicare for All, a $15 per hour state minimum wage, affordable college, and much more. Alison would ensure that our state has progressive representation.

Peter Janko

State Central Committeeman, 14th Congressional District

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Peter Janko is one of the many first timers that took up Sen. Bernie Sanders’ call to run for office. A lifetime activist, Peter began working toward a better planet as far back as the 1970s. While still in his teens, he became involved in the civil rights movement, the Vietnam War protests, and the ecology movement (as it was known as back then). Peter is founder of Medicare for All Northern Illinois, an Our Revolution local chapter.

Germaine Light

State Central Committeewoman, 15th Congressional Distric

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Germaine is a retired public school teacher, having taught biology for 27 years at Mahomet-Seymour High School. She has extensive experience as a labor activist. Her first union experiences were with Amalgamated Transit Union (ATU) as a city bus driver for Bloomington-Normal Public Transit and attending solidarity rallies for the Normal, IL firefighters locked in jail for striking. Germaine was a member of Mahomet-Seymour Education Association/IEA/NEA for 27 years, and held many union positions, including Area Representative, Local Treasurer, Local President for four years, Region Council Representative, Delegate to the IEA & NEA Representative Assemblies for over 10 years, IEA Grassroots Political Activist for 6 years, Region Chair and Vice Chair and IEA Delegate to Champaign County AFL-CIO Local Labor Council for 15 years. Upon retiring in 2013, she became a member of IEA-Retired. In these positions much time was and still is spent lobbying public officials, noting their responses and performance in office, helping to run candidate endorsement meetings for IEA, and organizing union members to participate. She has worked for many years to enhance community coalitions in local labor groups like AFL-CIO and Central Illinois Jobs With Justice, where she is a founding member.  

Elizabeth Lindquist

State Central Committeewoman, 16th Congressional District

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Elizabeth believes it is the party’s responsibility to find and run candidates for every office. It’s not possible to build the party if there are no candidates for them to vote for. There’s also no building of the party without ideas. The Illinois Democratic Party platform should be readily available online, as should party bylaws and policies. Active participation of the grassroots base should be encouraged. None of this will be possible without new central committee members and new leadership.

Art Bardsley

State Central Committeeman, 16th Congressional District

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In 2014, Art was elected as the Precinct Committeeman (PC) for the Winnebago County, IL Democratic Party and became 2nd Vice-Chairman two years later. He has since recruited several progressives to the Winnebago Democratic Party. During Bernie Sanders’ run for President, Art was instrumental in the Northern Illinois region helping Bernie win 8 of 9 counties, and even helping in Iowa. Art also organized what eventually became “BerniePalooza,” which was held in Rockford and he eventually ran as a Bernie delegate to the DNC Convention.

Jody Coss

State Central Committeewoman, 17th Congressional District

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After many years of seemingly small victories, it is apparent that our political system is not working for everyday Americans. It’s time for a bold progressive movement at every level of our politics. Jody would be proud to carry that message to the Democratic State Central Committee of Illinois.

Ed Klein

State Central Committeeman, 17th Congressional District

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After a lifetime of seemingly small victories, it is apparent that our political system is not working for everyday Americans. It’s time for a bold progressive movement at every level of our politics. Ed would be proud to carry that message to the Democratic State Central Committee of Illinois.