Businessman Willie Wilson running under his own party, the Willie Wilson Party, was defeated in the race for Illinois US Senate against incumbent Dick Durbin(D) in yesterday’s general election. Also on the ballot were Mark Curran(R), David Black(G), and Danny Malouf(L). The race was called almost immediately after the polls closed, with Wilson winning only 4% of the vote.
Wilson first ran for office back in 2015 when he bid for Mayor of Chicago against former Mayor Rahm Emanuel. The following year Wilson ran as a Democrat for US President but dropped out of the race in April. He went on to cast his vote in the general election for Republican Donald Trump. Wilson made another bid for Chicago Mayor in 2019 but once again did not advance in the race.
Willie Wilson, a millionaire businessman, used his own money to fund his campaign and often gives millions to people in the Black community. He owns several McDonald franchises and a medical supply company. He has donated millions of PPE to Illinois residents.
Willie Wilson, a strong supporter of property tax reform, proposed the Property Tax Hardship Relief bill to the Illinois legislature, which, if passed, would stop those with past-due tax bills who are seeking to retain their homes from being charged higher interest rates. In 2017 Wilson proposed the Bail Bond Reform bill, which ensures that low-income residents who commit minor crimes do not remain in jail solely because they cannot afford to post bail.
Over 70% of the precincts reported Senator Dick Durbin (D) won his re-election by over 50% of the vote. He was first elected to office in 1996 and serves as the Senate Minority Whip. Dick Durbin served as House Representative for Illinois District 20 from 1983 to 1997. Durbin, an attorney, now entering his fifth term in the Senate, serves on the Appropriations Committee responsible for distributing federal funds and the Judiciary Committee.
Dick Durbin, the 2nd highest-ranking Democrat in the Senate, is a strong supporter of both the Affordable Care Act enacted by former President Barack Obama and the Dream Act, which grants residency to any immigrant brought to the US as a minor. Durbin favors gun control and believes that measures must be put into place to prevent those with mental illness from obtaining access to gun licenses.
In a statement released by his campaign, Senator Dick Durbin expressed his gratitude to his supporters, stating, “To those who supported my election, thank you for once again trusting me to represent you, your family and our home state of Illinois. It is an honor.” He also thanked his opponents for their participation. He spoke to the future, saying, “Now we have work to do to vanquish this virus and rebuild our broken economy. I am ready for the challenge.”
Paula J. Shelton is a writer living in Chicago. Follow her on social @beboldshineon.