G-PAC and Giffords PAC Celebrate 88 Victories in General Election

Wednesday, November 9, 2022

G-PAC and Giffords PAC Celebrate 88 Victories in General Election

Endorsed Candidates Win Hotly-Contested Supreme Court Races, Build Supermajority in Illinois House


Chicago — The Gun Violence Prevention PAC Illinois (G-PAC), the state’s leading political force in ending gun violence, and Giffords PAC are proud to announce the victories of 88 gun-safety candidates in races in Tuesday’s general election. Chief among them are victories in both contested Illinois Supreme Court races as well as a pickup in the Illinois Senate and four pickups that build the supermajority in the Illinois House.

“Public safety was at the top of voters’ minds, and they’ve made clear that gun safety champions are the ones they trust to hold elected office in Illinois. G-PAC congratulates the gun safety candidates who were victorious in the general election, particularly newly elected Supreme Court Justices Elizabeth Rochford and Mary Kay O’Brien as well as Senator-elect Rachel Ventura and Representatives-elect Diane Blair-Sherlock, Nabeela Syed, Mary Beth Canty and Laura Faver Dias. We are proud to have built and defended the supermajorities in the Illinois legislature and helped elect Supreme Court justices who have earned our support,” said Kathleen Sances, President, and CEO of the Gun Violence Prevention PAC. “Since we founded G-PAC in 2013, we have created an electoral and legislative infrastructure that has made Illinois a safer state, and today we are proud to build on that legacy with major victories all across the state. We are confident that these gun safety candidates will further strengthen Illinois’ laws to help end the public health crisis of gun violence — including passing a statewide ban on assault weapons and large-capacity magazines as soon as possible.”

“In recent years, leaders across Illinois have worked diligently to pass meaningful legislation and make the state a national leader in the fight to save lives and reduce high rates of gun violence. Voters across the state took another step forward in this effort by decisively reelecting Governor JB Pritzker, Lt. Gov Juliana Stratton, and Attorney General Kwame Raoul and solidifying Speaker Chris Welch’s and Senate Majority Leader Don Harmon’s gun safety supermajorities in the legislature,” said Sean Holihan, state legislative director at Giffords. “Governor Pritzker has worked with legislators, law enforcement, and community partners to comprehensively address gun violence across the state by closing loopholes in the law and investing in community violence intervention programs. Giffords looks forward to continuing to work with these courageous leaders to save lives by improving the state’s gun laws.”

Eighty eight endorsed candidates have won the general election with the support of G-PAC and Giffords PAC. The organizations were heavily involved in delivering victories in many contested races, including:

  • Judge Elizabeth Rochford (Illinois Supreme Court, 2nd District)
  • Justice Mary Kay O’Brien  (Illinois Supreme Court, 3rd District)
  • Sen. Laura Ellman (SD 21)
  • Sen. Suzy Glowiak-Hilton (SD 23)
  • Sen. Ann Gillespie (SD 27)
  • Sen. Laura Murphy (SD 28)
  • Rachel Ventura (SD 43)
  • Rep. Janet Yang Rohr (HD 41)
  • Rep. Terra Costa Howard (HD 42)
  • Diane Blair-Sherlock (HD 46)
  • Rep. Maura Hirschauer (HD 49)
  • Nabeela Syed (HD 51)
  • Mary Beth Canty (HD 54)
  • Rep. Mark Walker (HD 53)
  • Laura Faver Dias (HD 62)
  • Rep. Anne Stava-Murray (HD 81)

In addition, Maggie Trevor is leading in the 9th District Cook Co. Commissioner race, which would also be a pickup on the Cook County Board.

In order to earn the endorsement of G-PAC and Giffords PAC, each candidate voiced their support of the organizations’ top legislative priority: banning assault weapons and large-capacity magazines in Illinois. Looking toward veto and lame duck session before the 103rd General Assembly is sworn in this coming January, the gun violence prevention movement will be forcefully advocating to pass the measure into law.

G-PAC has already passed three landmark pieces of legislation in the past four years that make Illinois’ gun laws some of the strongest in the nation, including:

  • GHOST GUNS LAW (Public Act 102-0889): Criminals are using untraceable weapons to commit crimes without being caught, and law enforcement around the country has recovered an increasing number of ghost guns in recent years. G-PAC passed a law to make Illinois the first state in the Midwest – and only 12th in the nation – to make the transfer, purchase, manufacture, importation, and possession of ghost guns illegal.
  • BLOCK ILLEGAL GUN OWNERSHIP (BIO) LAW (Public Act 102-0237): Our FOID Card system was broken, so G-PAC passed a law that expands background checks to all gun sales, creates a stolen gun database, requires the Illinois State Police to remove guns from people with revoked FOID cards, invests in mental health funding, and more. This measure closes dangerous loopholes that supply the illegal guns fueling Illinois’ gun violence epidemic.
  • GUN DEALER LICENSING LAW (Public Act 100-1178): Unregulated gun dealers were operating in Illinois for far too long. Not anymore. G-PAC passed a law that requires all gun dealers to be certified by the Illinois State Police; mandates employee training, video surveillance, and inspection of all gun dealers; and requires state police to publish key information on crime-related firearms.


About Gun Violence Prevention PAC (G-PAC)

The Gun Violence Prevention Political Action Committee (G-PAC) is the state’s leading gun violence advocacy organization. It was founded in 2013 to counter the political influence of the gun industry and their lobby in Springfield.

About Giffords PAC

Giffords is a nonprofit organization dedicated to saving lives from gun violence. Founded by former Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords, Giffords PAC inspires the courage of people from all walks of life to make America safer.

MEDIA CONTACT: ahanns@kivvit.com

As the Lake County State’s Attorney, I am honored and humbled every day to lead the fight against crime, and to strive to ensure equal and just treatment under the law. I have been an attorney for twenty-two years – and each of those years has made me a stronger and smarter advocate for people, for ideas, and for the principles that unite us all.

I am so proud to lead an office of 140 dedicated colleagues who serve the public by prosecuting crime, advocating for victims, and planning crime prevention programs. I am also proud to work with hundreds of Lake County police officers on a daily basis to connect with every community and to develop comprehensive, holistic plans to respond to the mental health and economic crisis that arose from the COVID-19 pandemic.

On one particular day, July 4, 2022, I was saddened, inspired, and motivated by the bravery of so many people. We will always stand with the victims and honor the police and other first responders who ran toward the danger. Just as so many heroes that day thought only of themselves, I also witnessed the prosecutors in my office answer the call to serve survivors and their community – even on one of its darkest days.

Every moment that I have been your legal representative, I have worked tirelessly to oversee prosecutions and to implement policies that make my family and my neighbors safer in the short term and in the long term. That is the job of the State’s Attorney: to prosecute, to innovate, and to strategically plan.

I was raised in a small town. My parents are teachers, and from them, I learned that everyone must be treated equally and that America’s sacred mission is to provide a political, economic, and legal system that allows anyone to prosper regardless of the circumstances of their birth. After graduating from Knox College and the University of Chicago Law School, I spent two years at a first-rate civil law firm in Chicago where I learned that hard work and attention to detail on every case mean the difference between success and failure.

With my wonderful wife Stephanie, I am raising my two sons, Sam and Teddy, in Lake County. Nothing is more important to me than my family’s safety and I bring that passion and determination to protect all families with me to work every day.

I joined the Lake County Public Defender’s Office in 2003 and started my own law firm in 2009. From 2003 until 2020, I watched the Lake County legal system fail to prioritize violent crime, prevent wrongful prosecutions, or address racial disparities.

So, in 2019, I decided to run for State’s Attorney so that I could serve our community by improving a local legal system that cared more about covering up its mistakes and biases than uncovering new and innovative ways to help people.

I won the 2020 election, and became the first Democrat to hold this position in 40 years. Bringing in a new party wasn’t as important as ending 40 years of one mindset that had forgotten the people and that had failed to act urgently to develop new strategic plans to prevent crime while also ensuring that each prosecution is smart, moral, and just.

We have followed through on our promises. We have built the first-ever violent crimes unit, increased prosecutors in our domestic violence division, and vastly upgraded our cyber lab. Now, we have top-notch software and personnel to finally keep up with those who would exploit others.

We have been awarded a large federal grant to bring the first ever Human Trafficking Task Force to Lake County. We have deepened our investment in people by bringing in more victim specialists and raising the salaries of many of our prosecutors.

But the work goes on. We must expand our prevention efforts that are starting with the Gun Violence Prevention Initiative launched in 2022. And we know that the opioid crisis touches thousands of lives throughout this country.

I am proud to serve on the Executive Board of the Lake County Opioid Initiative which has been working tirelessly since its founding in 2012 to reverse a devastating trend of increased overdoses. In 2022, our office was part of a national settlement against opioid manufacturers and distributors.

As an attorney of 22 years, I have committed my life to helping people, and I have conducted over 70 jury trials in Lake County, and handled appeals that have culminated in over 20 oral arguments before the appellate court and Supreme Court of Illinois.

I see my time in this office as the next phase of helping a community that I love and where I have chosen to raise my family. In my first term, we have made Lake County safer and fairer through just prosecutions, constitutional policing, and innovative crime prevention policies.