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Downers Grove

Downers Grove school board member considers attempt to unseat Sandack in 81st District

DOWNERS GROVE – District 99 School Board Member Keith Matune is considering challenging incumbent Ron Sandack in the 81st House District primary next year.

Matune sent letters this month to Republican precinct committeemen announcing his possible candidacy.

"I am part of a middle class family and fully understand the burdens the Democrats in Springfield have placed upon us, because we are painfully living it," he says in the letter. "I believe I would give the strongest voice to what our fellow citizens in the 81st District are experiencing economically in Illinois as well as credibility in solving the pension crises."

When reached by phone, Matune said he is circulating petitions and declined to comment until he is officially a candidate.

"Until my name is on the ballot and I have discussed it further with my family, that is the only comment I have at this time," he said.

He said he will likely make an official announcement in December.

The letter also touts his background as a student-athlete at Purdue, where he won national championships in gymnastics, and his experience as a high school teacher for the last 14 years.

He is currently in the third year of his first term on the Downers Grove School District 99 School Board.

Matune does not name Sandack in the letter, but says "I am the only clear conservative running for the Republican nomination …"

Sandack, an attorney and the former mayor of Downers Grove, served in the Illinois Senate from 2010-13. Redistricting would have forced him to face Senate Minority Leader Christine Radogno to keep that seat, so he instead ran for and won his current 81st House District seat.

The 81st District serves portions of Bolingbrook, Darien, Downers Grove, Lisle, Naperville, Westmont and Woodridge.

This week, Sandack was chosen to serve as the Republican Spokesperson for the Illinois House Judiciary Committee.

Sandack said Friday he will run for re-election and plans to make an official announcement next week. He declined to comment regarding his potential challenger.

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