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Now, Republicans appear to be rallying around attorney and 2003 Miss America Erika Harold (R-Chicago). Harold, despite being a multiracial woman, is a hard-line conservative, particularly on social issues such as abortion and sex education. I've heard GOP operatives outside of IL-13 refer to Harold as "the next Henry Hyde". Harold was the youth director for Patrick O'Malley's unsuccessful 2002 IL-Gov GOP primary bid.
At a Democratic unity breakfast in Springfield on Thursday, IL-13 Dem primary winner David Gill went negative on Harold despite the fact that there are several candidates for the IL-13 GOP replacement nomination. According to Gill, "I don't shy away from challenges and I'm ready to take on any Republican that they throw up against me, up to and including Miss America.", a clear reference to Harold.
While Harold is curently a Chicago resident, Harold, if selected by Republicans as the replacement nominee, wouldn't exactly be a carpetbagger, as she is a native of Urbana, Illinois, which is at the eastern end of IL-13.
I live about 30 miles outside of IL-13, and, therefore, am not a voting resident of the district, but Democrats in IL-13 have a legitimate candidate in David Gill. Regardless of whoever Republicans select to run against Gill, IL-13 Democrats should support Gill, because it is highly likely that this district will determine which party will have a majority of seats in the United States House of Representatives in the next Congress.