Results: Democratic Rep. Lauren Underwood defeats Republican Scott Gryder in Illinois' 14th Congressional District election

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Lauren Underwood's campaign; Scott Gryder's campaign; Insider
  • Rep. Lauren Underwood was running against Republican Scott Gryder in Illinois' 14th Congressional District.

  • In 2018, Underwood flipped the district, which had been a Republican stronghold for decades.

  • Illinois Democrats divided up the GOP territory Underwood had been representing in redistricting.

Democratic Rep. Lauren Underwood defeated Republican Scott Gryder in Illinois' 14th Congressional District.

Polls closed in the state at 7 p.m. local time, or 8 p.m. EST.

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Illinois' 14th Congressional District candidates

Underwood, a two-term Democrat first elected in 2018, is the youngest Black woman to serve in the US House of Representatives. She also became the first Black millennial woman to ever represent the majority-white district when she defeated longtime Republican Rep. Randy Hultgren.

Underwood, 36, serves on the House Committees on Veterans' Affairs and Appropriations. She co-founded and co-chairs the Black Maternal Health Caucus.

Prior to being elected to Congress, the Democrat from Naperville, Illinois, served as a senior advisor at the US Department of Health and Human Services, where she helped implement the Affordable Care Act.

Gryder, Underwood's challenger, currently serves as chairman of the Kendall County Board. Gryder, who's been elected three times to the Board, is also licensed to practice law in the state of Illinois.

He entered the political world when he interned for US Sen. Peter Fitzgerald. He previously chaired Kendall County's Young Republicans and the Kendall County Republican Central Committee.

Gryder defeated four other candidates in the GOP primary.

Voting history for Illinois' 14th Congressional District

Illinois' 14th Congressional District sits below the 11th District and extends southwest along Interstate 80 into LaSalle County. It also includes DeKalb. Springfield Democrats divided the GOP territory — including McHenry County — that Underwood had been representing under the district's previous boundaries, among the other suburban Democrats, diluting the GOP voting power in the area.

Joe Biden had a 2.4 percentage point margin of victory over President Donald Trump under the district's previous boundaries in 2020 before the once-in-a-decade redistricting process following the 2020 Census made the district friendlier for Democrats.

The money race

According to OpenSecrets, Underwood had a massive cash advantage, raising more than $6.4 million, spending more than $5 million, and having nearly $2 million cash on hand, as of October 19. Her opponent, Gryder, had raised $571,000, spent $433,000, and had $137,000 cash still left to spend, as of October 19.

As of November 3, super PACs, national party committees, and other non-candidate groups had only been minor factors in the race, together spending about $663,000 to advocate for or against the candidates. Most of that money has benefitted Underwood, with Democrat-backing hybrid PAC House Majority PAC alone accounting for about more than one-fourth of that spending.

What experts say

The race between Underwood and Gryder was rated as "likely Democratic" by Inside Elections, "likely Democratic" by The Cook Political Report, and "leans Democratic" by Sabato's Crystal Ball at the University of Virginia Center for Politics.

Read the original article on Business Insider