In the midst of a tidal wave of conservatism across the country, a blue state with occasional hints of purple, turned red on Tuesday. Illinois elected Mark Kirk to the Senate over Obama pal and former state treasurer, Alexi Giannoulias. Although Kirk is a moderate Republican, he is a fiscal conservative and has promised to vote against cap and tax legislation in the Senate, in spite of his support of it as a Congressman. As this seat was formerly occupied by now President Obama, Kirk is now the junior Senator from Illinois replacing Blagojevich appointed Roland Burris. Because Kirk is already seated, he can help block liberal legislation that the Senate tries to pass during the lame duck session.
A red hue replaces the blue shade of Illinois House members as four Illinois House seats flipped to the Republicans. Three of these were expected. One of these victories came from rising star, Adam Kinzinger, who handily defeated incumbent Debbie Halvorson. Kinzinger gave a rousing, yet humble victory speech last night:
Up and coming Republican Bobby Schilling defeated Phil "I don't care about the Constitution" Hare to win the 17th Congressional seat by ten points. Randy Hultgren defeated Bill Foster in the 14th District. In a bit of a surprise, Joe Walsh has defeated incumbent Democrat, Melissa Bean, although the race has not officially been called. Walsh leads Bean by less than 1,000 votes. If this result holds, this would mean that Illinois is represented by 11 Republicans compared to 8 Democrats.
Incumbent Republicans won fairly handily in the 6th, 10th, 13th,15th,16th,18th, and 19th Districts.
Although the ran strong campaigns and were deeply principled, Joel Pollak and Issac Hayes, lost their races in two deep blue districts.