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WGLT's reporting on the November 2020 election cycle.

Democrat Karla Bailey-Smith Announces Race For 88th House District

Karla Bailey-Smith speaks at podium
Mary Cullen
/
WGLT
Democrat Karla Bailey-Smith announces her run against incumbent Rep. Keith Sommer in 2020 for Illinois' 88th House District at the McLean County Democrats headquarters on Thursday, Oct. 3, 2019.

Democrat Karla Bailey-Smith of Bloomington made her official 2020 campaign announcement Thursday in the race for Illinois’ 88th House District.

Bailey-Smith said incumbent Rep. Keith Sommer doesn’t represent his consituents as seen in his votes against the Keep Families Together Act, the teacher salary increase, and adding a gender nonbinary option on state IDs.

She said voters should look up his record for themselves.

“I don't think he's working as hard for the people of the 88th district as he could be,” she said. “I think he's working for the interest of businesses that are more interested in their profits than they are in their workers.”

Bailey-Smith vowed not to try and outspend Sommer in next year’s election. She said she’s had enough of campaigns bombarding constituents with contribution requests.

“I would really like to try and gather support from friends and from groups that I'm already involved with, to knock on doors and to talk to people directly rather than spending a lot of money on things like TV ads,” she said.

Sommer has served in the Illinois Legislature since 1999. He defeated last year’s Democratic challenger Jill Blair with 59% of the vote.

Bailey-Smith owns a painting business and is a guest scenic artist at Illinois Wesleyan University’s School of Theatre Arts.

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