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WGLT's reporting on the November 2020 election cycle.

Rep. Brady Again Defeats Blumenshine In GOP Primary

David Paul and Dan
Megan McGowan
Republicans David Paul Blumenshine, left, with state Rep. Dan Brady at a recent WGLT candidates forum.

State Rep. Dan Brady beat back his Republican primary challenger for a second time Tuesday, although by a smaller margin than he did two years ago.

With nearly all votes counted late Tuesday, Brady was ahead with 62% of the vote over challenger David Paul Blumenshine’s 38%, according to preliminary results from the McLean County clerk and Bloomington Election Commission.

Tuesday’s primary was a rematch of the 2018 contest between Brady and Blumenshine. Brady handily defeated Blumenshine with 74% of the vote that year. Blumenshine announced another run in mid-2019.

Brady acknowledged the unusual Election Day, with the coronavirus closing schools and businesses and dominating the news.

"We had a very low voter turnout, which I think played a role into the overall election from the standpoint of—there were more numbers (out there) that would've been there on my side," Brady said. "But the reality is that people's concerns and health is extremely important and comes first. And I understand that."

Blumenshine is a real estate broker and driver for Unit 5 schools. He criticized Brady repeatedly for supporting the $45 billion capital bill last year because it included tax and fee increases. Brady defended that vote and touted the infrastructure plan’s impact on Illinois State University and McLean County roads.

Blumenshine declined to comment on the results when reached by WGLT on Tuesday.

Brady, a licensed funeral director, has served in the Illinois House since 2001. He had a huge fundraising advantage over Blumenshine as a member of the House GOP leadership team.

Brady is seeking his 11th term in office. He is now set to face Democrat Chemberly Cummings in November. Brady defeated his last general election opponent, Ben Webb in 2018, with 60% of the vote.

Brady said he welcomed Blumenshine's supporters to his campaign ahead of the general election.

"Because we have work to do in the general election that now faces us in November. I believe in so many areas that we have more in common than we do apart," Brady said.

Brady's full statement Tuesday night:

"Tonight I am honored to have won the Republican nomination for State Representative in the 105th District. First off, I’d like to thank all those who participated in this unconventional election process. From voters to election judges, I appreciate all of your hard work and effort to make sure that our election continued as planned despite the unusual circumstances. I also want to thank all of my staff, my intern team, and my volunteers who took our message directly to thousands of voters of the 105th district. The issues facing our state at this time are real and varied. Right now, my top priority is working to protect the public from the outbreak of the Coronavirus. Other issues include fair map reform, property tax relief, and combating political corruption in Springfield that has plagued our state for decades. Looking ahead to November, I am working to bring together Republicans, both those who voted for me and for my opponent, as well as independents and Democrats to continue our effort for making Illinois work for all of us. Thank you to all those who voted today, and God Bless the State of Illinois."

The 105th House District includes the northern parts of Bloomington-Normal. It stretches northeast and includes Lexington, Towanda, Hudson, and other communities.

People like you value experienced, knowledgeable and award-winning journalism that covers meaningful stories in Bloomington-Normal. To support more stories and interviews like this one, please consider making a contribution.

Ryan Denham is the content director for WGLT and WCBU.
Joe Deacon is a reporter at WCBU.
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