U.S. Rep. Bill Foster held a commanding lead in the race for the Democratic nomination in the 11th Congressional District with 70% of the vote counted.
Foster will likely face Rick Laib, a sergeant with the Will County Sheriff’s Office, who had a strong lead in the Republican primary, in the general election in November.
Foster, D-Naperville, had 59% of the vote against progressive challenger Rachel Ventura.
Foster was first elected to Congress in 2008 and has represented the 11th Congressional District since 2013.
Foster touted his support from local and state elected officials and union groups. He had a significant fundraising advantage over his opponent.
Ventura, D-Joliet, a Will County Board member, argued for more progressive policies and criticized Foster for not backing proposals like Medicare for All and a Green New Deal. She had also blasted him for taking campaign contributions from large corporations.
Foster has argued for improving the Affordable Care Act, commonly known as Obamacare, instead of changing the entire health care system. He also touted his support for undocumented immigrants and votes for bill to grant them legal status in the U.S.
Laib faced Krishna Bansal, a Naperville businessman, for the Republican nomination. Laib was leading with 54%of the vote.
Laib argued for smaller government and against abortion. He was outspent by Bansal in the campaign.
Bansal campaigned for lower taxes and border protection while decrying what he described as socialist policies. In a conversation with The Herald-News, Bansal argued for revamping big social safety programs like Medicare to allow for citizens to save their own money for health care expenses.
Foster has a funding advantage going into the general election with a little over $3 million on hand as of last month, according to Federal Election Commission records.
Foster has routinely won with comfortable margins over Republicans in past elections, including by more than 20 percentage points in 2016.
The 11th Congressional District includes portions of Joliet, Plainfield, Shorewood, Bolingbrook, Naperville, and Aurora.