On January 26, Michael J. Madison, speaker of the Illinois House for 24 years, introduced HB 426. It moves the primary in presidential election years from the 3rd Tuesday in March to the 1st Tuesday in February. The bill has four other co-sponsors, all Democrats. Democrats control both houses of the Illinois legislature and the Governorship, so this bill will probably pass.
If the bill passed, Illinois would hold its primary for all office, not just president, in February (in presidential years). This would be the first time that any state had ever held a primary for Congress so far removed in time from the November election. Madigan says it would be too complicated to hold a presidential primary in February and a primary for all other office later in the year. Thanks to The Green Papers for this news.