Chris Essig

Walkthroughs, tips and tricks from a data journalist in eastern Iowa

Today is the Illinois primary!

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Today is Super Tuesday in Illinois, meaning 20 some-odd percent of eligible Illinois voters will be deciding which candidates for governor, lieutenant governor, treasurer, comptroller, U.S. Senate and other races will be representing each side of the isle in November’s general election. Across the board, this is going to be one of the most contested series of races in recent history, in part because the list of open races and vying candidates is so long. But at the same time, turnout has been very low across the state since the polling places opened at 6 a.m. It should be interesting to see if things pick up around 5 p.m. when most Illinoisans are getting off work.

My day hasn’t really started yet because the polls don’t close until 7 p.m. I’m not scheduled to work until 5 p.m. As we get closer to 7 p.m., be sure to follow Lee Enterprises on Twitter @Illinois_Stage. Both Mike and I will be tweeting throughout the night as the results come in. For tomorrow’s papers, I will be reporting on 18th Congressional District and 19th Congressional District, which means things will probably get real busy around 9 p.m. when races are being called. I will have a full update in the next day or two.

A few other Public Affairs Reporting interns are going up to Chicago to cover the races, including Tim Magaw and Chase Castle from the Daily Herald and Steve Contorno from the Chicago Sun-Times. I’m sure they are going to have some stories to tell when they get back tomorrow but for now it’s all (or mostly, at least) business.

While this isn’t my first time covering an election (I covered city elections while working at the Daily Eastern News at EIU), it will be my first Congressional election. Hopefully everything goes according to plan, and I’m not working too late…The House is scheduled to be in session tomorrow so there will be no rest for the weary.

And, finally: go out and vote! With so many contested elections, you could make a difference.

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