Let’s get it out of the way now; no, the Libertarian Party of Illinois did not achieve Established Party status as none of our candidates garnered 5% of the vote. In our main objective of this election, we failed. However, when looking at the results, we achieved more than ever before in our forty-three year history in Illinois, and in many ways have blown away all expectations and proven to the state that we are a force whom attention will be paid.
A quick glance at our vote totals and percentages demonstrates how we easily smashed almost all previous records for each office this year.
2014 Chad Grimm / AJ Cummings 118098 3.40%
2010 Lex Green / Ed Rutledge 34293 0.90%
2002 Cal Skinner / Jim Tobin 73794 2.09%
1994 David Kelley / Robert Moldenhauer 52388 1.68%
1986 Gary Shilts / Gerry Walsh 15646 0.49%
1982 Bea Armstrong / David Kelley 24417 0.66%
1978 Georgia Shields / Maggie Kohls 11420 0.36%
1976 F. Joseph McCaffrey / Georgia Shields 7552 0.16%
SEC OF STATE
2014 Christopher Michel 102873 2.90%
2010 Josh Hanson 114065 3.10%
2002 Matt Beauchamp 78830 2.24%
1994 Joseph Schreiner 38074 1.23%
1986 Steven Givot 17566 0.56%
1982 Roger Hosbein 19216 0.52%
1978 Ed May 9104 0.29%
1976 Ellyn Powelson 10461 0.23%
2014 Ben Koyl 96637 2.80%
2010 Bill Malan 53954 1.50%
2002 Gary Shilts 87949 2.51%
1994 Natalie Loder Clark 57104 1.85%
1986 Natalie Loder Clark 24068 0.77%
1982 Natalie L. C. Stason 28074 0.77%
1978 Sheldon Waxman 11917 0.39%
1976 John Reis 9165 0.20%
2014 Matt Skopek 141795 4.20%
2010 James Pauly 68093 1.90%
2002 Rhys Read 66593 1.92%
1994 Kati Kroenlein 53108 1.77%
1986 Jay Marsh 19875 0.64%
1982 Walter Edge 32452 0.90%
1978 Everett Moffat 17496 0.59%
2014 Julie Fox 165448 4.80%
2010 Julie Fox 119863 3.30%
2002 Julie Fox 144066 4.23%
1994 Michael Ginsberg 113071 3.85%
1986 Donald Morris 22428 0.73%
1982 Stephen Johnson 36856 1.02%
1978 Mark Wallace 21645 0.72%
1976 Mark Wallace 13788 0.31%
2014 Sharon Hansen 130762 3.80%
2010 Mike Labno 86325 2.40%
2008 Larry Stafford 50228 0.94%
2004 Jerry Kohn 69253 1.35%
2002 Steven Burgauer 57382 1.65%
1996 Robin Miller 41218 0.96%
1992 Andy Spiegel 34527 0.69%
1986 Donald Parrish 13891 0.44%
1984 Steven Givot 59777 0.64%
1980 Bruce Green 29328 1.25%
1978 Bruce Green 16320 0.51%
The closest we came to achieving our goal came from Julie Fox, the Certified Public Accountant who was outstandingly more qualified for the job over her Republican and Democrat opponents, and the one who campaigned harder than anyone else in the party. Earning endorsements from Taxpayers United of America, Free and Equal’s Christina Tobin, former Congressman Joe Walsh and former Governor and Presidential candidate Gary Johnson, it’s no surprise that Julie lead the pack in votes. When she first entered the room around 8 o’clock after the party had been well under way for a couple hours, the room lit up and she received a cheer from the crowd!
The Chicago Libertarian Party had a small get together in the city, while the Chad Grimm camp had a slightly larger gathering in Peoria with both the Peoria County and McLean County chapters in attendance. Of course, the DuPage Libertarians hosted the big Election Night Party, as gracious and loving as we are, at our monthly meeting location The American Tap, where many of us stayed well past midnight enjoying our successes and taking in our loss. Our Election Night Party included members from seven different state chapters; DuPage, Fox Valley, Chicago, Lake County, Will County, Peoria County and Southern Illinois. At one point in the middle of the night, we had well over sixty people in attendance, with several new members coming out for their first time to visit us and meet the candidates.
While voter turnout in DuPage County was low this election, the libertarian vote was high. We even beat the state average in many races, with DuPage County giving Julie Fox 5.29% and Matthew Skopek 4.34% of the total votes. Thank you, DuPage!!
We also got lots of media love from multiple sources that included several journalists from Chicago Talks as well as a Chicago radio station who broadcast live interviews throughout the entire night from our location. Since we had representatives from seven different chapters, members from each one were interviewed, describing their particular chapter and all the individual fun projects they work on. Many high ranking party members and chapter Chairs also spoke, telling stories and laying out our plans for 2015.
Overall, we’d like to thank everyone who came out to our Election Night Party and helped make it a blast. We’d also like to thank the candidates for doing an awesome job of getting the word out, their campaigns for rising to the challenge, and every member and volunteer who donated their time, money – or both – to helping make everything happen. Despite not reaching our ultimate goal, we reached others that we never expected, and also helped pave the way for what we need to do in the future. Many mistakes were made, and plenty of lessons were learned. Not having the Established Party status means that we will have more work in certain areas, but also that we still retain much freedom that we otherwise would have lost. There is much to celebrate, and much to plan for. Time to get moving!