Brunch to feature nominee Gill, runner-up Goetten

SPRINGFIELD — One month after the primary election, Matt Gotten Friday conceded the 13th Congressional District Democratic race to Bloomington physician David Gill.

Goetten, the Greene County state's attorney, made his announcement after the Illinois State Board of Elections certified the results of the primary.

The two now are expected to participate next Thursday morning in a "unity brunch" at the electricians' hall in Springfield, according to Gill campaign manager Michael Richards. The public is invited to the event, which is being organized by former U.S. Rep. Phil Hare of Rock Island, state Rep. Naomi Jakobsson of Urbana and several Democratic county chairmen in the district.

Gill defeated Goetten by 163 votes, according to the board of elections.

Gill finished the official ballot-counting with 15,536 votes (or 50.26 percent) to Goetten's 15,373 votes (or 49.73 percent).

There was a total of 30,909 Democratic ballots cast in the district, versus 51,932 Republican ballots.

In the Republican primary, U.S. Rep. Tim Johnson of Urbana received 35,655 votes (or 68.65 percent) to 9,571 for Frank Metzger of Glen Carbon and 6,706 for Michael Firsching of Moro. Johnson won all 14 counties in the district.

But Johnson has since decided not to run in the November general election, and GOP county chairmen in the district will have to choose a replacement candidate.

Among the Democrats, Goetten won 10 of the 14 counties, but he was beaten by more than 3-to-1 in Champaign County, the county with the greatest number of Democratic votes (6,777). It also had the greatest number of Republican ballots cast (10,060).

Gill won in Champaign, De-Witt, McLean and Piatt counties.

"I was honored to earn the support of thousands of people across central Illinois who were tired of failed leadership in Washington and wanted to count on good jobs, a strong middle class and a secure economy for our kids," Goetten said in a statement emailed to reporters. "I wish David Gill the best of luck in taking on the Republicans' failed agenda that all too readily caters to special interests and the wealthiest Americans, but puts our way of life in jeopardy."

Gill commended Goetten "for running a tough campaign" and said he wanted "to reach out my hand in friendship to all his supporters. I am honored to be your nominee."

This will be Gill's fourth congressional race. He lost to Johnson in the 15th Congressional District in 2004, 2006 and 2010.

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