CASH ON HAND $2,305,524
RUNNING FOR GOVERNOR BILL BRADY (R)
The Man: A wealthy real estate developer who co-owns one of Central Illinois' largest home builders, Bill Brady has served as State Senator for the 44th district since 2002. After losing a nomination bid for governor in '06 with 18% of the vote, Brady won a close primary against State Senator Kirk Dillard to take the GOP nomination and has enjoyed a favorable position in the polls for much of the general election season.
Brady is a strong conservative in a moderately-to-highly liberal state. Fiscally, Brady favors budget and tax cuts. He's also virulently anti-abortion and would like to reinstate the death penalty in Illinois.
In a down economy, Brady has appealed to voters by promising not to increase taxes while balancing the state budget. To do this, Brady says he'll cut spending evenly throughout the government.
Brady has the support of Republican celebrities like Mitt Romney, Rudy Giuliani and Chris Christie. Brady has reached out to the Tea Party Movement, appearing at a number of their events. Brady also managed to score an endorsement from Illinois' last Republican governor, Jim Edgar.
The Knock: After the first gubernatorial debate, held at the Union League Club in Chicago, Brady has seen his lead in the polls decline.
He continues to face criticism for plans to lower the state minimum wage to $7.25 and to cut education, which could lead to the loss of 20,000 teacher jobs.
Brady is also taking heat for his more conservative opinions regarding abortion, gay marriage and the death penalty.
The Strategy: Brady's attempts to associate Quinn with former governor Rod Blagojevich have had moderate success. More effective: casting his opponent as a bumbling manager. Brady's largest concern now is countering the accusation that he's a millionaire who only cares about his personal bottom line.