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Illinois - 10th District

Incumbent -- Mark Steven Kirk (R) ; Elected to the Senate in a special election and took office Nov. 29, 2010

Leans Democratic
Race Ratings Key

Updated Oct. 14, 2010

Democrat Dan Seals will make his third attempt at representing the northern Chicago suburbs, but his odds are somewhat improved since he's facing Republican businessman Bob Dold instead of Kirk. An early September poll taken for Seals' campaign showed him well ahead of Dold.

Seals has painted Dold as more conservative than Kirk, accusing him of opposing abortion rights (a charge Dold has denied) and pro-environment legislation. Dold got the endorsement of the Republican Majority for Choice, as well as the recommendation of the Illinois Federation for Right to Life, a distinction that allows that he does not meet their highest standards but is the best candidate in the race. The Club for Growth also endorsed him. A late September story alleging that a Dold staffer asked for a more moderate rating from a tea party group didn't help his campaign.

This is an expensive media market, and neither candidate is likely to be up on broadcast TV until shortly before the election. Expect this race to be close right up until Election Day.


District Information

District Profile from Politics in America

The mostly upscale 10th hugs Lake Michigan, taking in southeast Lake County and northeast Cook County. Along the lakefront, Chicagoland's old-money elite live in tony areas such as Wilmette (shared with the 9th), Kenilworth and Winnetka.

The 10th is home to well-educated, white-collar workers. The wealth of the workforce mirrors the wealth of local industry. The 10th is home to several Fortune 500 companies, including Allstate Insurance in Northbrook and Walgreens in Deerfield, but a nationwide economic downturn has led to layoffs at Abbott Laboratories in North Chicago.

Most of the 10th's minorities live in the northern area between Highwood and Waukegan (a small part of which is in the 8th). That area also is home to the Great Lakes naval base, the nation's only naval recruit training command. Waukegan is majority Hispanic and nearly 20 percent black, and North Chicago, just south of Waukegan, also has a minority majority. The 10th also has a large Jewish constituency.

Suburban white-collar workers and the more working-class residents of Waukegan mix to make the 10th fiscally conservative but socially liberal. Area residents have sent a Republican to the U.S. House for decades but generally support Democratic presidential candidates.

Major Industry

Pharmaceutical research, insurance, military

Military Bases

Naval Station Great Lakes, 3,922 military, 2,562 civilian (2011)


Waukegan (pt.), 78,405; Arlington Heights (pt.), 68,428; Buffalo Grove, 41,496


Highland Park's Ravinia Festival is the oldest outdoor music festival in North America.




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