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Local News

Batinick takes Cross’ 97th seat; Walsh Jr. and Manley re-elected

Another Republican was elected to fill the 97th House seat vacated by Tom Cross in his run for treasurer.

Voters chose Plainfield Republican Mark Batinick to become the new representative for the district, according to preliminary election results.

“Filling Tom’s shoes is going to be a huge, impossible task,” Batinick said, adding that Cross was a big help with fundraising for his campaign. “I think politicians spend too much time campaigning, not governing. I look forward to offering up my ideas to fellow caucus members.”

Incumbent Democrats who won big Tuesday included state Rep. Larry Walsh Jr., D-Joliet, in the 86th District, and Rep. Natalie Manley, D-Joliet, in the 98th District.

Batinick received 11,224 votes, or 56.5 percent of Will County votes in 43 precincts to take the seat over Shorewood Democrat Moira Dunn, who received 8,646 votes from Will County.

Kendall County voters voted in favor of Batinick as well with 3,946 votes in 21 precincts. Dunn received 2,814 Kendall County votes.

Batinick owns his own real estate business in Plainfield. He has been a member of the Plainfield and Oswego chambers of commerce and chairman of “For the Good of Illinois” political action committee.

He received a degree in business education from the University of Illinois and unsuccessfully ran for Will County auditor.

He lives in Plainfield with his wife and five kids, and has coached youth basketball and soccer teams. He said he wants to make sure Illinois is competitive with border states.

Batinick ran his campaign on a 39-page plan in which he outlines what he will focus on as a state representative.

His primary goal is to create jobs in the district and across the state. Other important issues for Batinick include alleviating property taxes and increasing funding for social services to the mentally ill.

In other races for state representative, preliminary results have John Anthony beating Martha Shugart for the 75th District, Margo McDermed winning the 37th District, and Al Riley for the 38th District.

The 79th District was a dead heat between Glenn Nixon and Katherine Cloonen.

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