Illinois voters, after leaning much of the night in Michael Dukakis’ direction, looked headed for George Bush territory.
With 78% of the ballots counted, polls showed the Republican vice president with a growing lead over the Democratic governor. After a night of see-saw totals, Bush had a 51%-49% edge and the state’s 24 electoral votes appeared to be in his column.
Voters in Illinois, a critical swing state that has sided with the winner in all but two 20th-Century contests for the White House, also decided whether to call a state constitutional convention to consider revising the charter adopted in 1970.
All nine Republican and 12 of the 13 Democratic representatives in the U.S. House faced opposition. They included House Minority Leader Bob Michel, who beat back a spirited bid by Democrat Doug Stephens, who gave Michel the toughest race of his career in 1982. Michel has been House minority leader since 1981.