SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (WCIA) — After a disappointing election for Republicans in Illinois, both Republican caucuses of the legislature have voted to switch their leaders.
Rep. Tony McCombie (R-Savana) has been elected as House Minority Leader. She is the first female leader of the Illinois House of Representatives from either party.
The vote was held behind closed doors in the Republican caucus Tuesday evening. She won with 31 votes compared to eight votes for Rep. Marty McLaughlin (R-Barrington Hills).
Rep. Jim Durkin (R-Western Springs), the outgoing House leader who announced he’s stepping down last week, said electing McCombie as leader is the best path forward for the party.
“She has energy,” Durkin said. “She’s very open minded. And I would just say that the alternative, which is people from the Darren Bailey camp, should not be in a position of power in any time in the state of Illinois.”
McCombie has served in the legislature since 2017 for three terms. Before working in the legislature she also served as the mayor of Savana. McCombie also received the Legislator of the Year award from the Township Officials of Illinois Tuesday.
Sen. John Curran (R-Downers Grove) also ran for Senate Minority Leader and won unanimously.
“I am humbled and honored to have the full support of my Senate Republican colleagues to serve as their new leader in the 103rd General Assembly,” Curran said in a statement. “We stand ready, with our focus directed toward the future, on developing solutions that will address the critical issues facing our state. We are equally dedicated to growing our ranks, which will give all Illinoisans greater representation and balance in their state government.”
Outgoing leader Sen. Dan McConchie (R-Hawthorn Hills) said he is proud of the work he has done during his tenure.
“It has been my distinct privilege to serve as Senate Republican Leader, and I wish Senator Curran the very best as he assumes the helm,” McConchie said.
Curran has served as a state senator since July 2017, and worked before as a Vice Chairman of the DuPage County Board and an Assistant State’s Attorney for Cook County.
McCombie and Curran will be inaugurated on Jan. 11.
Both Democratic leaders, Illinois Speaker of the House Chris Welch and Senate President Don Harmon, announced they have been voted for another term of leadership.