Democrat Gov. Pat Quinn and his Republican challenger Bill Brady toured the state Monday. The day started early for both candidates and the campaigning went late into the evening.
Senator Brady and wife Nancy were up before dawn. The Republican candidate shook hands with commuters--mostly suburbanites--getting off trains at Ogilvie Transportation Center. The Bloomington real estate developer is taking nothing for granted.
"We have to make sure our votes get out. There if election day they don't turn out the vote, it's hard to win," said Brady.
Before leaving Chicago for his final downstate campaign tour, Gov. Quinn and running mate Sheila Simon held court at Midway Airport.
"What Illinois needs most is common sense. We can't have nonsense. We've got to have a governor who has his eye on the target and the target is jobs," said Quinn.
The live and videotaped campaign activities of Brady and Quinn have taken a back seat to behind the scenes efforts at phone banks to get out the vote. Both parties are convinced the winner and loser in the close race will be determined by turnout.
"Voting is fundamentally an optimistic thing to do. It is not about the past. It's about where we go in our future," said Simon.
Gov. Quinn could not resist a parting shot at Senator Brady's negative ad campaign.
"I'm very disappointed in my opponent. He has run a lot of negative and mean-spirited ads. That's what he's counting on tomorrow to win, but what I'm counting on is everyday people," said Quinn.
At the train station Monday morning, Brady stayed positive.
"Illinois has got a brighter future. The people of Illinois are resilient. With the right leadership, we can make this the best state in the nation," said Brady.
Both Quinn and Brady ended their day with voter rallies.
Brady told a virtually all white, suburban crowd at a Wheaton bowling alley Monday night that total Democratic Party control of Illinois state government is nearing an end.
"We are going to move Illinois from the joke of every monologue to the forefront of pride in this country," Brady told the crowd.
But Democrats had something else in mind. At their rally outside Gov. Quinn's Near North Side headquarters, it was all about revving up the machine to turnout the vote, especially in Chicago and Cook County.
"Let's show the whole world that we know how to vote in the land of Lincoln, in the land of Obama," said Quinn.
Both parties are running phone banks to gin up their respective turnouts Tuesday. The Democrats, who during the past decade have dominated Election Day in Illinois, are putting every available soldier in the field.
"Vote as if your future depends on it, because it does," Quinn urged.Cohen, Whitney campaign before election
Two other candidates for Illinois governor were out campaigning Monday.
Scott Lee Cohen handed out leaflets near Union Station. He won the Democratic nomination for lieutenant governor but withdrew and is now running as an Independent for governor.
Green Party candidate Rich Whitney met voters near Union Station. He also ran for governor on the Green Party slate four years ago.