Campaign parties - 1Campaign parties 2
By Matt Helm
BOONE COUNTY ─ The polls officially closed at 7 p.m. for the Illinois State Primary Election on Tuesday, March 15 but this marked the beginning of a long night for incumbent State’s Attorney Michelle Courier and her challenger Tricia Smith as they gathered with their supporters to watch the results of the voting.
Michelle Courier held her election party at the Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) Hall in Belvidere.
“I want to keep on doing the job that we’ve done,” Courier said. “I know the responsibilities that come with being a State’s Attorney; we are running a performance over promises campaign.”
Courier greeted her supporters at the door with familiar hugs and handshakes.
“We are innovative in our approach when it comes to prosecuting crime and curbing gang related activity,” Courier said. “I don’t want to see our efforts go backwards.”
Courier held the position of State’s Attorney for seven years.
“My ties to the community have only grown deeper with time,” Courier said. “I am confident in the job that we’ve done and now I will leave the decision to the voters.”
Down the road in Poplar Grove, challenger Tricia Smith held her election party at the Timber Pointe Golf Club.
“I have a long history of trying criminal cases,” Smith said. “I believe that it is time for a change. My experience as a prosecutor equips me with the skill set necessary to handle all aspects of what it takes to be a State’s Attorney, and not just office work.”
Smith worked as a police officer, an assistant State’s Attorney and Public Defender and on the County Board as a District I representative.
Marshall Newhouse was in attendance at Tricia Smith’s election party and voiced his support.
“She brings to this position a wealth of experience and has been on all sides of the issue,” Newhouse said. “She will get into that office and hit the ground running. It is a huge amount of responsibility and you want a person who will best represent the state’s interests as well as representing the County Board as attorney.”
Newhouse summed up the energy in the room:
“Both Courier and Smith have put a tremendous amount of effort into their campaigns,” Newhouse said. “I would anticipate that whether you are here at Timber Pointe or down at the VFW both of them are going to be quite anxious. These next few hours are going to be nail biters.”
Smith’s supporters celebrated as the results came in on a projection screen on the wall. With 100 percent of precincts reporting, Smith earned 53 percent of votes (4,968) compared to Courier’s 47 percent.
“Thanks you for all of your support. We greatly appreciated the opportunity to serve Boone County,” Courier said.
Smith is now the Republican nominee for Boone County State’s Attorney for the general election in November. She stands unopposed at this point in time.
“I am proud of the hard work of my supporters no matter the results,” Smith said. “Thank you to everybody who voted for me and participated in the election.”

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