Departing state House GOP leader Jim Durkin giving up his seat in Illinois General Assembly


Jim Durkin in his office in the Loop in November. He served in the General Assembly for 22 years and nine years as minority leader. He hopes moderate Republicans carry on the fight.

Tyler Pasciak LaRiviere/Sun-Times

SPRINGFIELD — Outgoing Illinois House Republican Leader Jim Durkin will also resign his position in the Illinois General Assembly after 22 years.

“After 22 years in the General Assembly, 9 as the minority leader, it is a time to give this great responsibility to the next generation of public servants,” Durkin said in a letter to the Clerk of the House, which also said his resignation is effective on January 10 at 11:50 p.m.

The Western Springs Republican in November said he was relinquishing his role as House minority leader, a largely thankless job as his party moved further to the right and the state moved further to the left.

Despite his high-profile departure, Durkin in November told the Sun-Times that he wants moderate Republicans to soldier on.

“The state wants people who are more to the middle. That’s why we have a bigger independent voting bloc, because of the extremes in both parties. Extremes on both sides dictate the primaries, and that’s what happens in the general elections,” Durkin said. 

State Rep. Tony McCombie of Savanna will replace Durkin as the House Republican leader.

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