Illinois State Senator John O. Jones has dropped out of the Republican primary in Illinois’ 54th Senate District.
Jones opponent, tea party favorite State Senator Kyle McCarter, challenged 440 of approximately 1200 signatures Jones submitted, and Jones fell below the required 1000 signatures once 250 were invalidated by the IL State Board of Elections.
Monica Seals of Centralia Morning Sentinel talked with Jones, and says he is considering a 3rd party candidacy for the 54th Senate district.
Effingham City Council member Brian Milleville said Jones could have chosen to run in the new 58th district which includes his home in Mt. Vernon, “but chose to carpetbag to the 54th”. Milleville continued:
Jones running against McCarter has more to [do with] punishing McCarter for not bowing out in favor of Radogno’s wishes to have Jones, not McCarter (the incumbent) run in the 54th. That way David Luechtefeld could run in the 58th instead of Jones.
Jones will need to file 3,000 additional signatures of voters within the 54th District if he wants to appear on the ballot, with a June 25th filing deadline.
If Jones were to run an independent campaign, he would likely take support away from McCarter, making it more likely for Democrats to pick up an Illinois Senate seat.