Seals gains on primary foe in poll

Democrat Dan Seals laid claim to a commanding lead Monday by releasing a poll with less than three months to go in his Illinois congressional primary campaign against former Clinton administration official Jay Footlik (D).

Seals leads Footlik 58 percent to 6 percent in the poll, which surveyed 404 likely primary voters. It also shows Seals with a 69-24 advantage in name recognition.


The winner will face Rep. Mark KirkMark Steven KirkOn the Trail: Senate GOP hopefuls tie themselves to Trump Biden campaign releases video to explain 'what really happened in Ukraine' Why Republicans are afraid to call a key witness in the impeachment inquiry MORE (R-Ill.) in the general election.

Seals, who fell to Kirk by six points last year, benefits from name ID left over from that campaign. Footlik, meanwhile, announced the launch of his first ads the same day the polling began.

Both have raised significant money — Seals with $570,000 and Footlik with $480,000 — and observers expect a much closer primary on Feb. 5.

“We recognize that we still have a way to go, but I am very pleased by the strong showing of support, and it’s clear that our ’06 supporters still stand with us today,” said Seals’s campaign manager, Patrick Mogge.

The Footlik campaign emphasized how much more campaigning Seals has done.

“Dan Seals spent $2 million last year introducing himself to voters, so his current lead is not surprising at all,” said Footlik campaign manager Simon Behrmann. “What is surprising is how Dan Seals lost in the best Democratic year by over six points.”