"I know that the best way for me to continue serving the people of Illinois is to continue doing the job that I love," Madigan said during a press conference at the Sheraton Hotel. "This is a decision that I made with my husband about what is best for us and our family, and what is best for the state."
Madigan had been courted by the White House to consider a run for the U.S Senate, but with two young children, and her father working as the powerful Speaker of the House Michael Madigan, she has decided to take the safe bet and run for re-election as Attorney General.
"I think it would have been a brutal campaign regardless," said Burris strategist Delmarie Cobb. "I think now some other people may run for governor who weren't going to run for governor."
Many were shocked by Madigan's announcement, believing she would be the frontrunner for whichever race she chose.
"I'm really surprised," said political analyst Paul Green. "Normally I say, like everybody else, 'Oh, I knew it, I'm not surprised.' I am shocked."
Likely grateful that he won't be seeing her as an opponent, Gov. Pat Quinn sang Madigan's praises in a statement released to the press Wednesday evening.
"Throughout her years in public office, Attorney General Lisa Madigan has proven herself to be capable, conscientious, and committed to the best interests of the people of Illinois. She has done a fine job as 'the people’s lawyer.' I look forward to working alongside her in our common cause of providing strong, responsible, honest government for the people of Illinois."
With this decision, the dominoes in the Illinois political landscape quickly began falling. State Treasurer Alexi Giannoulias has announced an exploratory committee for the Senate, and Chris Kennedy is expected to jump in the race now that Madigan has made her choice.
Sen. Roland Burris may still run as well. He's been embroiled in controversy since his appointment by tainted former Governor Rod Blagojevich in December.
On the republican side, U.S. Rep. Mark Kirk announced that he's planning a run for the Senate.
Republican Rep. Kirk Dillard will announce his intentions to run for governor Wednesday.