Kane County Republican leadership still does not have solid commitments from candidates to challenge Democratic incumbents for county board chair, circuit clerk, state’s attorney or auditor.
The first day to circulate nominating petitions is Sept. 5 for the March 19, 2024, primary and Nov. 5, 2024, general election.
Coroner Rob Russell is the only Republican incumbent in a countywide office who has declared he is seeking reelection to a fourth term.
Recorder Sandy Wegman had said in June that she was thinking about seeking a seventh term, but had not made up her mind. She did not respond to voicemail or text messages asking if she had decided.
Among Democrats, County Board Chair Corinne Pierog, Circuit Clerk Theresa Barreiro, State’s Attorney Jamie Mosser and Auditor Penny Wegman all have said their intentions are to seek second terms.
Kane County Republican Party Chairman Andro Lerario said he has been interviewing potential GOP candidates.
“We have very good interest in the auditor position, the county board chair and state’s attorney,” Lerario said.
July might seem early to declare a candidacy, but Mosser made her announcement at a June 21 fundraiser, Russell made his announcement at a fundraiser June 27 and Pierog made her announcement June 28. State Sen. Cristina Castro, D-Elgin, is hosting Barreiro and Penny Wegman for an Aug. 24 fundraiser at The Martini Room in Elgin.
Kane County Democratic Chairman Mark Guethle said the reason more Republicans are not stepping up for countywide offices is because Donald Trump is still at the top of the GOP ticket.
“What happens in a case like this is all the normal people won’t run if Trump is on top of the ticket,” Guethle said. “Trump, if he wins, he’s fine. If he loses, it’s fraudulent. It was never proven. He just said it and people believed it.”
Lerario dismissed Guethle’s comments as “foolish and childish.”
“It’s nice to see Trump is still living rent free in his head,” Lerario said. “It is not about Trump or the top of the ticket. He is convinced Trump will be the front-runner and top of the ticket? Then thank him for doing the work.”
Lerario said people don’t talk about Trump when discussing the county. He said they’re more concerned with taxes.
“Trump and the top of the ticket never comes up,” he said. “And MAGA – I do not see anything wrong with making America great.”