|Turnout||52.37% 9.21 pp|
Thompson: 40-50% 50-60% 60-70% 70-80%
Stevenson: 40-50% 50-60%
|Elections in Illinois|
The 1986 Illinois gubernatorial election was held on November 4, 1986. Republican candidate James R. Thompson won a fourth term in office, defeating Solidaritist Adlai Stevenson III by around 400,000 votes. The Democratic Party just passed the 5% mark to retain major party status.
Primaries were held March 18, 1986.
The primaries and general elections coincided with those for federal offices (Senate and House), as well as those for other state offices. The election was part of the 1986 Illinois elections.
The primaries saw turnout of 21.10% in the gubernatorial primaries, with 1,289,162 votes cast, and turnout of 18.01% in the lieutenant gubernatorial primaries, with 1,100,110 votes cast.
Turnout during the general election was 52.37%, with 3,143,978 votes cast.
The 1986 election was a rematch of the 1982 election, which had been narrowly won by Thompson over Adlai Stevenson III by about 5,000 votes out of over 3.5 million votes cast. However, Stevenson's efforts were largely derailed in the primary when the candidates he supported for Lieutenant Governor (George Sangmeister) and Secretary of State (Aurelia Pucinski) were both upset by Mark J. Fairchild and Janice Hart. While not heavily publicized during the primaries, Fairchild and Hart were followers of the controversial Lyndon LaRouche. When this became public knowledge after the primaries, Stevenson was forced to abandon his Democratic Party nomination and run as a third-party candidate. As of 2016, this remains the last time a third party candidate finished in the top two in the Illinois governor's race.
Stevenson made it clear right after learning his running mate was to be a LaRouche supporter that he would "never run on a ticket with candidates who espouse the hate-filled folly of Lyndon LaRouche".
Adlai Stevenson III, former United States Senator and 1982 gubernatorial nominee, defeated Larry Burgess in the Democratic primary.
Originally Neil Hartigan had declared himself a candidate for governor, but after Stevenson's entrance into the race, he instead opted to run for reelection as Illinois Attorney General.
|Democratic||Adlai E. Stevenson||735,249||92.93|
|Democratic||Mark J. Fairchild||340,727||51.75|
|Democratic||George E. Sangmeister||317,700||48.25|
Incumbent James R. Thompson defeated his sole challenger, Peter Bowen.
|Republican||James R. Thompson (incumbent)||452,685||90.90|
Incumbent George Ryan won the Republican primary for lieutenant governor, running unopposed.
|Republican||George Ryan (incumbent)||441,672||100|
Adlai Stevenson III's newly-formed Illinois Solidarity Party nominated him for governor and Mike Howlett for lieutenant governor.
The Libertarian Party nominated Gary L. Shilts for governor and Gerry Walsh for lieutenant governor.
The Socialist Workers Party nominated Diane Roling for governor and Jim Little for lieutenant governor.
|Republican||James R. Thompson (incumbent)/ George Ryan (incumbent)||1,655,849||52.67||+3.23|
|Illinois Solidarity||Adlai Stevenson III/ Mike Howlett||1,256,626||39.97||N/A|
|Democratic||No candidate/ Mark Fairchild||208,830||6.64||-42.66|
|Libertarian||Gary L. Shilts/ Gerry Walsh||15,646||0.50||-0.16|
|Socialist Workers||Diane Roling/ Jim Little||6,843||0.22||+0.22|
|Write-in||Charles E. Koen||141||0.01||N/A|
|Write-in||Wilbur L. Keeling||30||0.00||N/A|
|Write-in||David L. Bernabie||13||0.00||N/A|
However, politicians here suggested other reasons: an unusually low turnout of about 25 percent of the 6.1 million registered voters and the relatively unfamiliar names of Mr. Stevenson's candidates, George Sangmeister for Lieutenant Governor and Aurelia Pucinski for Secretary of State. The LaRouche victors were Mark J. Fairchild for Lieutenant Governor and Janice Hart for Secretary of State.
At a packed news conference Wednesday night, Stevenson declared: "I will never run on a ticket with candidates who espouse the hate-filled folly of Lyndon LaRouche."