Illinois Governor JB Pritzker hints he may not seek reelection to 2nd term

CHICAGO (WLS) -- Governor JB Pritzker hinted Thursday that he may not run for a second term, breaking the news even as Illinois is poised to come out of the pandemic and make his job a bit easier starting next week.

So, the question is: Is the governor serious, or just being coy about his plans?

If Pritzker decides not to run again, it would send shockwaves across the political landscape in Illinois and open the floodgates for candidates on both sides of the aisle.

In a one-on-one interview Thursday, he left open the possibility that maybe he only wants to serve one term.

"You know, again, I haven't talked to my family completely about this and I need to spend time with them had to have that conversation. So I'll get back to you shortly. I promise," Pritzker said.

Pritzker seemed to kick start his re-election bid with a whopping $35 million personal donation to his campaign coffers on March 12. The donation came right around the first anniversary of when he had to shut the state down due to the pandemic.

One political insider said First Lady MK Pritzker is not very happy with the lifestyle created by the demands of her husband's job.

Due to staffers contracting COVID, Pritzker has had to quarantine multiple times at his Gold Coast mansion, with his family sometimes spending time at other homes out of state.

Pritzker said Thursday that family is a re-election consideration.

"Well, I, you know, again, it's a long decision process. This is a hard job. You know it takes you away from your family quite a lot. That is part of the job that I haven't enjoyed is being away from my kids and my wife," Pritzker said.

Regardless of what Pritzker is saying publically, many political observers firmly believe he will run again in 2022. He was asked when he would formally announce his decision.

"Well again, I have to talk to my family about it and I'll get back to you as soon as I know an answer," Pritzker said.

But others who know Pritzker well tell ABC7 that while politically they don't see the governor hanging it up after one term, they could see it on the personal side.

Having lost both parents at a young age, not having time to spend with his children might weigh on Pritzker. And as a billionaire, he doesn't need the job.
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