Illinois Election Information

General Primary Election


General primary elections are elections where party members elect candidates for their party for an upcoming general election. Illinois uses the closed primary system. In a closed primary, voters must declare their party affiliation and will receive one political party's ballot. The voter will then choose from candidates on their political party's ballot.  In even-numbered years, General Primaries are held on the third Tuesday in March. 


In Illinois, a voter states his or her affiliation with a political party at the polling place in order to vote in that party's primary. Because the voter does not have to register partisan affiliation in advance, Illinois' primaries are considered open. The winner of a primary in Illinois is the candidate who receives the highest number of votes cast for the office being sought, even if the candidate does not receive a majority of votes cast.

General Election


The general election is one that is held in the whole state and is not limited to voters in a particular party or a specific locality. A statewide general election is held on the first Tuesday after the first Monday of November in even-numbered years. The general election for the President is held quadrennially on the first Tuesday after the first Monday of November.

The purpose of a general election is to make a final choice among the various candidates who have been nominated by parties or who are running as independent or write-in candidates. In addition, where nonpartisan races have not been decided in the primary, the runoffs are held at the general election. The purpose of the statewide general election for given state and congressional offices is for voters to make a final choice between the top two-vote getters in the statewide primary election. Statewide measures also can be placed on the November ballot.

Consolidated Primary 

February 23, 2021

6:00 AM - 7:00 PM

Consolidated primaries are held in Illinois in odd-numbered years to elect municipal and/or township officials. This type of election is only necessary when:

1. the number of candidates who file petitions reaches more than four times the number to elect
2. there is a township election and the township caucus cannot determine their candidate

Consolidated primaries are held on the last Tuesday in February.

Consolidated Election 

April 6, 2021

6:00 AM - 7:00 PM

Consolidated primaries are held in odd-numbered years to elect Municipal, Township (only every 4 years), Park District, Library District, School District, Community College District, Regional Office of Education Trustee, and Fire District Officials. 

Consolidated elections take place on the first Tuesday in April.

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