Former state Rep. Jeanne Ives (R. Wheaton), who narrowly lost her bid to unseat then Republican Gov. Bruce Rauner in the GOP primary just over a year ago, is back in the political spotlight after announcing her run in the 6th Congressional District.
Ives, a West Point graduate and staunch conservative, is poised to take on Evelyn Sanguinetti, who served as Rauner’s lieutenant governor running mate in the 2020 GOP primary.
Despite the Sun-Times forecast that the race could be one of the biggest GOP primaries in the state, Ives kept a low-profile in making her candidacy official, filing her Statement of Candidacy with the Federal Election Commission in the last several days with little fanfare.
Soon after announcing her candidacy, Jonathan Greenberg, an ordained rabbi and senior fellow at the Haym Salomon Center in Northbrook, took to Twitter to describe Ives as “one of the best, toughest, most honorable people I’ve met in politics."
The winner of the Ives/Sanguinetti race will take on freshman U.S. Rep. Sean Casten (D-Downers Grove). Republicans have targeted Casten almost from the day he was sworn in after he shook the political landscape late last year by knocking off six-term incumbent Rep. Peter Roskam with nearly 54 percent of the vote.
Ives aligns herself with the pro-Trump wing of the GOP.
“The popular revolt against Illinois’ political ruling class fell just a bit short,”Ives posted on her website following her narrow loss to Rauner.
Even while out of office, Ives, who served in the 42nd Illinois House District for six years, has sought to remain an active voice on the issues she considers most critical to the state.
She recently spoke at a town hall meeting on the subject of soaring property taxes in the south suburbs and the issue of anti-gun legislation like House Bill 174, which sought to punish gun owners for not reporting a stolen firearm within 72 hours of the incident by stripping away their Firearm Owner's Identification Card.
And just days before Democrats in Springfield banded together at the end of the spring session to pass Gov. J.B. Pritzker’s $85 billion spending plan, which includes at least 21 provisions that allow taxes or fees to be raised, she warned voters to be on guard against what she deemed “Mike Madigan time.”
With Ives now officially in the race, the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee described her upcoming showdown with Sanguinetti as a “full-blown Civil War.”
Meanwhile, representatives for Sanguinetti sought to be a bit more diplomatic.
“We welcome Jeanne to the race and look forward to showing why Evelyn is the conservative with the best chance to beat Casten,” the Sanguinetti campaign said in a statement.
The 6th Congressional District includes parts or all of Wheaton, Naperville, Westmont, Bartlet, Elgin, Barrington Hills and Palatine.