SPRINGFIELD, Ill – Bob Schillerstrom, one of seven candidates competing for the Republican gubernatorial nod, ended his campaign this morning and endorsed former attorney general Jim Ryan.
“As Election Day nears, it is clear that we lack the financial resources necessary to communicate with voters statewide,” Schillerstrom said.
In a brief phone interview after this morning’s announcement, Schillerstrom said he began thinking about ending the campaign in the last two days.
“It was our feeling that we had the right message and the right team…but at the end of the day we didn’t feel we could get our message out there and weren’t able to raise adequate funds to do that.”
With several candidates also hailing from a Republican stronghold area, Schillerstrom said he was concerned about splitting votes.
“It’s my base and has been for well over a decade. I do believe we would have split the votes, weakening my candidacy and weakening (Ryan’s).”
Schillerstrom based his campaign message on his experience as chairman of the DuPage County Board but struggled to separate himself in a crowded field. His pledge to only serve one term managed to earn some attention along with a tongue-in-cheekcampaign commercial mocking his own name.
Schillerstrom raised about $660,000 during his campaign but only had about $119,000 left at the end of December. The total put him far behind several other candidates, according to reports filed this week.
A brief message on Ryan’s Facebook page said Schillerstrom ran a “spirited campaign.”
“We share many of the same priorities for Illinois — especially putting Illinoisans back to work and holding the line against higher taxes,” the message read.
Six men now remain in the race: state Sen. Kirk Dillard, former Illinois GOP chairman, Andy McKenna, commentator Dan Proft, businessman Adam Andrzejewski, state Sen. Bill Brady and Ryan.
Illinois’ primary is Feb. 2.