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Budzinski takes victory in the 13th District Congressional Democratic primary, AP reports

Nikki Budzinski won the 13th Congressional District Democratic primary on Tuesday, according to The Associated Press.
Belleville News-Democrat
Nikki Budzinski won the 13th Congressional District Democratic primary on Tuesday, according to The Associated Press.

Editor's note: This story was originally published in the Belleville News-Democrat.

The Associated Press declared Nikki Budzinski the winner in the race to be the Democratic nominee for the 13th Congressional District, which includes parts of the Metro East. The Associated Press reported Budzinski had 18,297 votes, or 77.3%, with an estimated 48.8% of the votes counted in the primary while her opponent, David Palmer had 5,380 votes, or 22.7%, according to unofficial results.

In the Republican primary for the 13th Congressional District, Regan Deering had a lead over three other candidates in the battle for a spot on the November ballot.

With about half of the votes counted, Deering had 11,112 votes, or 35.3%. She had a narrow lead over Jesse Reising, who had 10,519 votes, or 33.4%. The other GOP candidates are Matt Hausman and Terry Martin.

Budzinski posted on her Facebook page that she was “honored” to be the Democratic nominee for the district. “Working families in Central and Southern IL need a champion who will fight inflation, tackle rising costs of gas and energy, and stand up for them. I’m ready to fight to turn this seat union blue in November,” she posted.

The 13th Congressional District was redrawn last year by Democrats and now includes parts of the Metro East that previously had been part of Republican U.S. Rep. Mike Bost’s 12th Congressional District. Belleville, East St. Louis and parts of Edwardsville and Collinsville are now in the 13th District, which cuts across central Illinois to include parts of Springfield, Decatur and Champaign-Urbana, paving a favorable path for a Democratic candidate.

Budzinski, 45, of Springfield is a former senior adviser to Gov. J.B. Pritzker and served during his first year as governor. Her role included pitching Pritzker’s policies to Southern Illinois residents. Budzinski was endorsed by local unions and Metro East Democratic lawmakers including state Reps. LaToya Greenwood, Katie Stuart and Jay Hoffman, and state Sen. Christopher Belt.

Deering, 46, of Decatur said in a candidate profile she is a community advocate and philanthropist. Neither Budzinski nor Deering have run for a public office before this race.

The 13th District includes parts of St. Clair, Madison, Champaign, Macon, Piatt and Sangamon counties, and all of Macoupin County.

This seat was open since incumbent Republican U.S. Rep. Rodney Davis had to run in the newly created 15th Congressional District on Tuesday. He lost the GOP primary race to U.S. Rep. Mary Miller on Tuesday.

12th Congressional District District Primary Results

Homer Markel was leading the Democratic primary in the 12th Congressional District in the race to face incumbent U.S. Rep. Mike Bost in the November election, according to unofficial results Tuesday.

Markel, had 6,401 votes, or 57.9%, to take the lead over Joshua Qualls, who had 4,653 votes, or 42.1%%, in the Democratic primary, according to the AP’s report of about one-third of the vote counted. Bost of Murphysboro was unopposed in the Republican primary. He has served in Congress since January 2015.

All of, or parts of, 34 counties make up the 12th Congressional District: Alexander, Clark, Clay, Clinton, Coles, Crawford, Cumberland, Edwards, Effingham, Franklin, Gallatin, Hamilton, Hardin, Jackson, Jasper, Jefferson, Johnson, Lawrence, Marion, Massac, Monroe, Perry, Pope, Pulaski, Randolph, Richland, Saline, St. Clair, Union, Wabash, Washington, Wayne, White and Williamson.

The results from Tuesday’s primary will later become final after they are certified by election officials next month.

BND reporter Kelsey Landis contributed information for this article.

Mike Koziatek is a reporter with the Belleville News-Democrat, a news partner of St. Louis Public Radio.

Mike Koziatek is a reporter who covers the Belleville area for the Belleville News-Democrat, a news partner of St. Louis Public Radio.