Andy Mckenna, 4 to 1
What can you say, there is no other way to describe Andy McKenna other than as the money candidate. Unlike his 2004 Republican Primary U. S. Senate bid, where he spent 2.5 million dollars of his own money and a similar amount from his friends and family for a 4th place finish and 14% of the vote, this time his very polished ads have been effective and they have moved numbers. He is far from a sure thing to win all the marbles in the primary, but he is the favorite.
Major negatives? Appears very nervous and ill at ease when questioned. Despite his ducking debates, voters may have seen enough of that to put their votes elsewhere.
Jim Ryan, 7 to 1
Despite the bungling of the Rolando Cruz prosecution (wrong guy on death row for many years) and his long time association with now convicted felon, Stu Levine, former State's Attorney and Attorney General Ryan oozes character, presence and integrity. Long on name recognition and short on money, he may not have had sufficient TV ads to remind the voters of his integrity.
Major negatives? Told Berkowitz in a 2007 interview that he supported a five billion dollar Illinois tax increase. That was cited in a McKenna TV ad that may have been lethal.
Senator Kirk Dillard, 10 to 1
A very smooth, polished and experienced politician. If he wins, it is because Republican voters decided they wanted someone who might appeal to Democrats and Independents and someone who had the big time support of former Governor Jim Edgar. Dillard has always worked well across the aisle, some would say too well.
Major negatives: Did a short video used in a TV ad for Obama in the Iowa Democratic Presidential caucus. Supported a recent regional sales tax increase.
Senator Bill Brady: 15 to 1
The only downstater in the bunch. Makes very few mistakes. Fifteen years experience in the General Assembly and a solid family man and businessman.
Major negatives; Some conservatives think he kept conservative Oberweis from beating Topinka in the 2006 gubernatorial primary. Couldn't raise enough money to become more competitive upstate. Not very popular with his state senate colleagues. However, electric smile and can be very charming. Could surprise.
Dan Proft: 30 to 1
Best ideas, best message, most consistent conservative, at least philosophically. If he had an angel with a million dollars, would have been in top two. Best one liners of the debates and campaign. Even the liberal media like him for his great copy.
Major Negatives: Decision to work in Cicero for big bucks and decisions over the years to participate in campaigns for moderates Coulson and Gidwitz. Purists can't tolerate such actions, Andrzejewski and he cut into each other's "outsider vote."
Adam Andrzejewski, 40 to 1
Came out of nowhere. Real novice in politics. Learned quickly, but ultimately had too far to go in too short a time. Said to have a net worth of ten million dollars, or so. Self made, wealthy businessman. Could have been State Comptroller nominee, but considered the suggestion an insult. Favorite of many of the ideological purists. Good family man. No apparent baggage of any type.
Major negatives: Didn't look or sound like a Governor. Just didn't have the requisite experience of having been around politics, or substitutes for same. Proft and he cut into each "other's outsider vote."