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Kinzinger is running, but district yet to be decided

WASHINGTON, D.C. — U.S. Representative Adam Kinzinger will go for his second two-year term in Congress next year, but in which legislative district is still undecided.

"Absolutely, I am running again," the Manteno Republican said earlier this week.

"The court case involving the redistricting is still pending, but regardless of whether I'll be running on the Democratic or the Republican map, I'm running in the district that represents Grundy County."

If the original redistricting map, which was drawn by the Democrats, survives the court challenge filed against it by U.S. House Republicans in July, Kinzinger will run in the new 16th District.

This district extends from Iroquois County at the Indiana border on the east, to Livingston, Grundy and La Salle counties in the center, and north to Boone and Winnebago counties at the Wisconsin border.

If the Fair Congressional Map, the version advocated by the Republicans, wins the court challenge, Kinzinger will run in the new 11th District.

This district extends from Iroquois, Champaign and Vermilion counties on the east, and continues through Livingston, Ford and McLean counties to Grundy and La Salle counties on the north.

No matter which of the two new districts in which he runs, Kinzinger said he will "be campaigning in Grundy and La Salle counties." He represents the current 11th District at this time.

Kinzinger said he will go back to the basics of his grassroots campaign for re-election.

"And I think I will do pretty well," he said. "I think the people of the district are ready for a new generation of leadership, and that's what I'm trying to offer."

The political maps are redrawn once every 10 years. They influence politics and policy making in the decade to follow. Because the Democrats control the state government, they influenced the redrawing of the new Congressional and Illinois legislative districts.

The Democrats' political map was signed into law by Gov. Pat Quinn in July. Whether it's the Democrat or Fair Map version, the new map will be in effect through the redistricting that follows the 2020 Census.

"We lost the governor's race, they built their own map and we lost a lot of people," Kinzinger said. "It's too bad they can't keep the districts the way they have them now."  

Candidates will face each other in the new districts in the March 2012 primary and in the General Election in November 2012, while at the same time, they will continue to represent their current districts. The new districts will go into effect when Congress is sworn into office in January 2013.

"I want to make it perfectly clear that I'm 100 percent committed to running again," Kinzinger said. "Some details will have to wait for the court case to be settled out. But obviously, I currently represent Grundy County, and I will continue to do so."

If the Democratic map wins the court case, Kinzinger, who now lives in the new 2nd District, will move into the new 16th District to run for re-election, he said. Which means Kinzinger would face current 16th District Representative Donald R. Manzullo, R-Rockford, in the March primary, if Manzullo decides to seek re-election in the new 16th District.

Morris resident Bronco Bojovic has also formed an exploratory committee and is weighing a run against the two incumbents in the 16th District Republican primary.

If Kinzinger did not move out of the new 2nd District, he would probably face Congressman Jesse Jackson Jr., D-Chicago, in the General Election.

Manzullo's spokesman in the Crystal Lake office said Tuesday the congressman will run for re-election to the new 16th District. He began circulating his petitions last week.

"We just don't know what the district will look like because, although it was approved by the Democrats in Springfield, it's being challenged in court," the spokesman said.

"We don't believe the Democratic map will stand."

The hearing on the court challenge is scheduled for mid-November. The court's decision is to be given "right after that," the spokesman said.

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