Newcomer Shane Ritter pulled off a political upset Tuesday, defeating Kankakee County Board Chairman Mike Bossert in the Primary Election. It was a 2-1 margin of victory for Ritter. The Olivet Nazarene University dean won 64% of the vote to Bossert's 34%.
Besides Bossert's defeat, two other incumbents lost their county board seats.
Tinker Parker defeated Stanley James and Elizabeth Dunbar was a winner over incumbent Larry Enz.
Bossert was targeted after the County Board ran into financial turmoil, failed to meet payroll and then laid off some three-dozen sheriff deputies and correctional officers. The public safety issue became a major force in the campaign.
The Fraternal Order of Police Lodge 150, representing the county's law enforcement officers, gave the endorsement to Ritter, who was also endorsed by the taxpayer watchdog group OUTRAGE.
Ritter said the win means opportunity to help set a new direction for county government.
Judge Mike Kramer, a Kankakee County associate judge, was an easy winner Tuesday for circuit court judge. He was a unanimous winner over State's Attorney Jamie Boyd, who opted to seek the judgeship and not seek re-election for state's attorney.
Kramer won 10,220 votes (74%) to Boyd's 26 percent (3,562).
Boyd has been state's attorney for nearly 10 years. He was appointed in 2006 before winning two consecutive elections.
Kramer will now run unopposed in the November election; and the circuit court judges will have to appoint someone to take Kramer's spot as an associate judge.
Two contested races in Ford County Tuesday saw voters selecting Andrew Killian of Gibson City as state's attorney while Kim Evans of Paxton won re-election to her circuit clerk position.
Killian won the Republican nomination for state's attorney with an easy win over Lance Cagle of Fisher. Killian garnered 2,434 votes to 822 for Cagle.
Current state's attorney Randy Yedinak did not seek another term. He instead ran and won the state's attorney's race in Livingston County.
Evans won the Republican nomination for the circuit clerk's job by defeating newcomer Suzie Shell of Paxton. Evans earned 2,346 votes to 926 for Shell. This will be Evans' third consecutive four-year term as circuit clerk. She's been in the office for 34 years.
Livingston County voters selected the Ford County state's attorney to be their new state's attorney. Tuesday, voters chose Randy Yedinak to the prosecutor's office over incumbent Seth Uphoff.
Seth Uphoff was defeated by the challenger Yedinak by 5,003 to 3,234 votes. That was a 61 – 39 percent margin. Yedinak is a former Livingston County prosecutor who left the office in 2014 to take over as state's attorney in Ford County. But Yedinak said Livingston County residents asked him to challenge the incumbent.
Yedinak still has obligations to Ford County and will work toward a smooth transition.
Dan Watson defeated Keri Jo Schmidt for the Republican nomination as coroner in a race to replace retiring Coroner Mike Burke. Watson won 5,094 to 2,952 votes, or 63.31 percent to 36.69 percent.
Voting is underway in today's Illinois Presidential Primary Election. Polls are open until 7 pm. Iroquois County election returns, from a summary glance, will be broadcast this evening on 94.1 WGFA and at www.wgfaradio.com
In the neighborhood of 700 voters have already cast an Early Vote ballot. That's about 200 more than the 2012 election. Polling places are expected to be busy with several contested races in area counties, including Iroquois, Kankakee and Vermilion.
Iroquois County has a field of 20 candidates after 10 available seats for County Board. Each of the four county board districts are contested.
Two of four candidates will be elected in District 1. Five candidates are after three seats in District 2. Five Republicans are after two seats in District 3. There's also a Democratic candidate. And there's three seats available in District 4; five names are on the ballot.
GOP races are in two precincts, in Ash Grove (Paul Bowers and Vince LaMie) and in Middleport II (Dan Joyce and Kevin Bohlmann).
Kankakee County voters have choices on the Republican ballots for State's Attorney (Ed Glazer and Emile Capriotti) and for a seat on the bench, between Judge Michael Kramer and current State's Attorney Jamie Boyd). County Board seats are also challenged.
Locally in Vermilion County, the race for the Democratic nomination for Coroner features a battle between Steve Cornett and William 'Butch' Fields.
On the Republican ticket, Republicans Charles 'Chuck' Mockbee IV and Jacqueline Lacy are challenging each other to become the next Vermilion County State's Attorney.
Candidates for the Vermilion County Board are also on today's ballot, but most are un-contested. Districts where there are contests finds Darren Duncan and Darrell Cambron facing off on the Republican ballot in District 1. Nancy Brumfield and Crisi Walls are running on the Republican ticket for a seat available in District 5. And Hau Swearingen and Diante Johnson are after a seat in District 9.
Brad Halbrook, Randy Peterson and James Acklin are battling it out for the Republican nomination for State Representative in the 102nd District.
52nd District State Senator Scott Bennett is running without any opposition from within his party. None of the candidates running for Vermilion County Board on the Democratic ticket have any Primary opposition.
Livingston County has a Republican race for State's Attorney between Seth Uphoff and Randy Yedinak. (Yedinak is the current Ford County Presecutor).
Voters will also help nominate candidates for President, U.S. Senator, Congress, and members of the Illinois General Assembly.