From Eric Krol, in today’s Daily Herald:
A Hastert retirement would set up a likely Republican primary pitting Oberweis against Aurora state Sen. Chris Lauzen. The two conservatives would battle it out for their party’s base of supportIf that's what the field looks like heading into Februrary, my prediction is that Lauzen wins.
In the 2006 Republican primary, Kane County represented 58% of the total votes in the 14th District. Kendall represented 17%. Obviously those two counties, Kane in particular, are must wins for the nomination. Oberweis' poorest showing in Kane was in 2004 (29%, compared to 56% and 40% in ’02 and ’06, respectively) when the race included a State Senator from Kane (Rauschenberger). I think the same dynamic will play out in ’08, and Lauzen will beat Oberweis in Kane.
In Kendall, Lauzen already has a base (his district includes part of the county), while Oberweis has seen his number go down from 61% in ’02 to 42% and 37% in ’06 and ’04, respectively, even though no “favorite son” was in the picture in the later two cycles. Once again, I predict a Lauzen win in Kendall. Lauzen also won most of the western counties in the district when he ran for Comptroller in '98.
If Oberweis is willing to set his sights lower than Governor and U.S. Senator in order to get elected, maybe he should skip Congress and run for Lauzen's State Senate seat.