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Peter Breen grabs GOP bid from Sandra Pihos in 48th District

Published: Tuesday, March 18, 2014 11:09 p.m. CDT • Updated: Wednesday, March 19, 2014 10:43 a.m. CDT
(Erica Benson - ebenson@shawmedia.com)
Peter Breen greets supporters, including Emil Haddad of Elmhurst, while awaiting election results Tuesday at Capone's in Lombard. Breen went on to defeat incumbent Sandra Pihos for the Republican nomination in the Illinois House 48th District.

LOMBARD – Lombard Village Trustee Peter Breen has won the Republican candidacy in the general primary race for Illinois House District 48, defeating incumbent Sandra Pihos by grabbing 57 percent of the votes.

With 102 of 104 precincts reporting, Breen claimed 8,214 votes (57 percent), while Pihos garnered 6,244 (43 percent), according to preliminary results on the DuPage County Election Commission website.

"We were cautiously optimistic, but what a pleasant surprise," Breen said Tuesday night. "It's humbling that the people decided in such a large margin for the chance to bring new leadership to Springfield. I'm honored that they decided to put me in there to be the [Republican] nominee."

Presently, there is no Democratic candidate bidding for the seat. The 48th District covers all or part of Lombard, Downers Grove, Glen Ellyn, Oakbook Terrace and Wheaton.

"We intend to continue on because they could still put somebody up – we're not going to take anything for granted," Breen said.

Breen, 37, thanked his campaign – comprised strictly of volunteers. In the past weekend, his team helped cover half the district knocking on doors, and reached voters in the other half of the district by telephone, Breen said.

"Our volunteers have caught the spirit of new leadership, and now the voters of the district have also caught that spirit."

Breen was elected to the Lombard Village Board in 2011 and also served a stint as acting village president last year after the passing of longtime president William Mueller. He is vice president and senior counsel of the Thomas More Society.

Breen called himself an "energetic thinker" and pointed to his "proven" record of reduced spending in Lombard during an interview with Suburban Life Media earlier this month.

"I have the time, energy and understanding of the issues to be a citizen legislator who truly acts in the best interest of the taxpayers of the district," he said at the time.

Pihos, 67, of Glen Ellyn, said public service has never been a job, but a calling.

"I have always been passionate about service and I have been privileged and fortunate to service my constituents throughout the years," Pihos said Tuesday night. "[But] we have Democracy for that purpose – the voters have spoken and I will move forward."

Pihos was elected to the General Assembly in 2002. She is currently serving her sixth term in office. She formerly served on the Glenbard High School District 87 school board.

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