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Bost claims victory in Illinois 12th congressional district

  • Mike Bost is congratulated by a supporter at the Murphysboro Elks Club Tuesday night.

    Mike Bost is congratulated by a supporter at the Murphysboro Elks Club Tuesday night.
    Geoff Ritter photo

 
By Holly Kee
hkee@localsouthernnews.com
updated: 11/7/2018 12:39 AM

What looked to be a tight race in the last couple weeks of the campaign morphed quickly into an easy victory for congressman Mike Bost of Murphysboro on Tuesday evening, as he won re-election to the 12th congressional district in southern Illinois.

Bost declared victory just before 10 p.m., over St. Clair State's Attorney and Democratic candidate Brendan Kelly.

"I'm incredibly proud of the campaign we put together. We fought hard, focused on the issues, and always made Southern Illinois values our top priority," Bost said in a statement released via email.

"It's the honor of a lifetime serving southern Illinois in our nation's capital, and I'm looking forward to doing so for another term."

With 93 percent of precincts reporting, Bost was leading Kelly by nearly 25,000 votes, a margin of 54 percent to 43 percent.

Kelly decided to wait for the final votes to be counted before making any statement to the media. However, campaign spokesperson Elana Schrager did release a statement to this newspaper.

"On Election Day, the Kelly Coalition is as strong as ever. Southern Illinois needs a leader who listens to the people, not the powerful few -- and hundreds of volunteers have talked with thousands of folks across Southern Illinois over the last few months to make that happen. Today was no different -- Brendan was out with all our volunteers knocking on doors until the polls closed. We're still waiting for numbers to come in, but our mission has been clear since day one: we must save Southern Illinois."

Southern Illinois University professor Randy Auxier, the Green Party candidate, ran a distant third in the race, capturing 3 percent of the vote.