Billionaire Democrat Pritzker Wins Illinois Governor Race

(Bloomberg) -- Democrat J.B. Pritzker, a billionaire and heir to the Hyatt hotel empire, won the Illinois governor’s race, beating incumbent Republican Bruce Rauner, according to projections from FOX and NBC.

Billionaire Democrat Pritzker Wins Illinois Governor Race

Pritzker poured more than $171 million of his own money into his campaign fund, setting a record for self-funding a race for U.S. governor. He defeated Rauner, a former private equity executive, whose term had been defined by a partisan standoff with the Democrat-controlled legislature that left Illinois without a budget for a record two years.

Billionaire Democrat Pritzker Wins Illinois Governor Race

That fight worsened the state’s already deteriorating finances, drove unpaid bills to a record $16.7 billion and put Illinois on the brink of becoming the first junk-rated U.S. state. The crisis ended after lawmakers, including members of Rauner’s own party, overrode his veto, enacting a budget with higher taxes.

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