Illinois’ outgoing House minority leader is now in the race for treasurer. Minority Leader Tom Cross (R-Oswego) says times are tough, but this is no time to flee. “I want to fix the state. I want to make it better. I want to be part of the solutions. I want to take on those challenges, and it’s for those reasons and others that I’m announcing that I’m running for treasurer,” he said today in Chicago, at the start of a two-day tour of the state to kick off his campaign.
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Other campaign stops today are in Rockford and Moline; on Thursday he’ll be in Peoria, Quincy, Springfield and Plainfield. His Republican primary opponent is Bob Grogan, the DuPage County auditor, who says as an accountant and a certified fraud examiner, he’s better qualified. “If you owned a business and you were going to hire a treasurer, I would be on the list of people that you would be interviewing. Tom Cross would not be on that list,” he said. Bob Schillerstrom, the former DuPage County Board chairman, had entered the treasurer’s race, but he withdrew and gave a testimonial on behalf of Cross today.
Cross says his experience as a prosecutor would help him sniff out impropriety in state accounts. He also said he would sue, if needed, to enforce the balanced budget requirement. The Democratic candidate, with no primary opposition, is State Sen. Mike Frerichs (D-Champaign). The sitting treasurer, Republican Dan Rutherford, is running for governor.