Darren Bailey wins Republican nomination for governor of Illinois

Photo of the Illinois State Capitol building

Darren Bailey defeated Richard Irvin, Jesse Sullivan, and three other candidates in the Republican primary for governor of Illinois on June 28, 2022. 

Bailey is a state senator and farmer who was first elected to office in 2020. A campaign ad said, “In Springfield, Darren stood up for working families and fought against every single tax increase. When Governor Pritzker tried to close Illinois, Darren sued him and won to keep our state open. Now, Darren is running for governor with a plan to cut our taxes, fund our police, and impose term limits on politicians.” Former President Donald Trump (R) endorsed Bailey on June 25.

Along with Bailey, Richard Irvin and Jesse Sullivan led the Republican primary field in fundraising and media coverage leading up to the primary. Irvin is an attorney who has served as mayor of Aurora, Illinois, since he was elected in 2017. Sullivan is a venture capitalist who has not previously held political office.

Gary Rabine, Paul Schimpf, and Max Solomon also ran in the primary.

Bailey will face incumbent Governor J.B. Pritzker (D) in the November general election. Pritzker was first elected in 2018, defeating then-incumbent Bruce Rauner (R) 55% to 39%. As of June 28, 2022, The Cook Political Report and Inside Elections rated the 2022 general election as Solid Democratic, and Sabato’s Crystal Ball rated the race as Likely Democratic.