Preview of Ill. 118th District State Representative race

We’re just days away from the Primary Election in Illinois and two republicans are running for a seat to represent an area of the Heartland.
Published: Jun. 23, 2022 at 5:43 PM CDT
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MARION, Ill. (KFVS) - We’re just days away from the Primary Election in Illinois and two Republicans are running for a seat to represent an area of the Heartland.

We sat down with both candidates to hear their thoughts on some key issues.

Paul Jacobs, the incumbent who currently serves the 115th district is up against Aaron Smith, a John A. Logan College Board member and partner in a commercial construction firm.

Both candidates are vying for the 118th district, which was redrawn due to redistricting.

We asked both candidates about pressing topics facing the state including abortions, which are Legal in Illinois, but a Supreme Court ruling could allow states to ban or limit abortions.

“I’m absolutely, unapologetically pro life. That’s some of my conservative values that we just won’t compromise on,” said Jacobs.

And for his competitor Smith, he also shared a similar thought.

“I have always been pro life. I have four kids. I see the impact that that position has everyday. My wife is a classroom teacher, we believe not just in being pro life at birth but then investing our youth, investing in our education system,” said Smith.

They also discussed the hot topic of gun control in the country and state.

“Guns are not an opinion, they are not a position, they are a right guaranteed in our constitution. I don’t believe the FOID card meets the standard of falling under the constitution, I don’t think it’s a legal thing that we have going on in our state,” said Smith.

Jacobs is pro the second amendment and shared his thoughts on the states FOID card.

“I don’t know if we will get the felons to go ahead and submit their checks morning and evening two or three times in a row, I doubt it very seriously. So we’re working to stifle the and punish the honest gun owners and that’s not the answer,” said Jacobs.

Both candidates know there is some struggle in their district. Jacobs believes simple items such as gasoline and others are in issue, but also sees the economic impact needing to be bolstered.

“Jobs, careers, that’s another issue. Whether we want to look at that or not, every county lost population in this district,” said Jacobs.

His counterpart Smith said mental health, safety in the communities and school is what he is going to keep a priority.

Smith also added some positive growth in the 118 district.

“The positive is, we have some good things to build on that are already happening in the 118. Where we are sitting in Marion, there’s all kinds of development. The Walkers Bluff project is in this district the Cairo port project is in this district,” said Smith.

The Illinois Primary Election is on Tuesday, June 28.

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