In a stunning development, Bill Daley has decided he will not run for Illinois governor. Daley, in an interview with the Chicago Tribune, says that his political experience might not have prepared him for the enormity of running for governor. Daley also says he believes that Gov. Pat Quinn will not win another term, and that another Democratic challenger should step forward.
Daley hasn’t necessarily been absent in this race. He’s called press conferences outlining his approach to pension reform, campaign finance, and has repeatedly singled out Gov. Quinn for what he believes has been a lack of leadership. Most recently, Daley slammed the governor for the $50 million Capitol building renovation project. Quinn responded by calling for a halt to any further work on the building, even though most of the money had already been spent.
Daley lagged behind Quinn significantly in fundraising. Daley has just under $800,000 in his campaign account, according to state records, compared to Quinn’s $2.3 million.
Daley’s withdrawal leaves Quinn as the sole candidate in the Democratic Primary. Attorney General Lisa Madigan had strongly considered a run, but backed off citing a desire not to serve as governor while her father, Michael Madigan, served as Speaker of the House.
On the Republican side, State Treasurer Dan Rutherford, State Sen. Kirk Dillard, Chicago businessman Bruce Rauner, and Bloomington Sen. Bill Brady have all announced their candidacies.
Daley is calling a 9:30 am news conference Tuesday morning to explain his decision, his campaign says. Chicago Tonight will have more on the response and reaction to this story tomorrow.