Just in case you thought the primary election was over, well, not so fast.

Just in case you thought the primary election was over, well, not so fast.

The campaign of Greene County State’s Attorney MATT GOETTEN, who is the apparent loser for the Democratic nomination to the U.S. House in the new 13th Congressional District, is continuing its plea to wait until all ballots are counted.

But DAVID GILL, the Bloomington emergency room doctor who had a 143-vote advantage in unofficial Election Day results, has been trying to move on. He also got an endorsement this week from former U.S. Rep. PHIL HARE, D-Rock Island, and even that announcement talked about looking forward.

“With so few absentee and provisional ballots outstanding, and many of them coming from Champaign County where David dominated with 75 percent of the vote, it’s hard to see how the results from primary night are going to change,” Hare said in his statement. “I think Democrats can all agree that the potential distraction of a costly, drawn-out recount process is counter-productive to our shared goal” of defeating incumbent U.S. Rep. TIM JOHNSON, R-Urbana.

Goetten’s campaign just Tuesday issued a fundraising email: “I need $2,300 to make sure we have resources to fight back against those that want to stop counting ballots,” it quoted the candidate as saying. “Can I count on you?”

MICHAEL RICHARDS, spokesman for Gill, issued a statement agreeing that a fair count is needed, but noting that he knows of fewer than 50 absentee ballots yet to be counted in all 14 counties with territory in the new 13th. The new district includes much of Springfield.

“Rather than seeing the writing on the wall and conceding graciously after a hard-fought race, Mr. Goetten’s campaign has decided to raise the specter of irregularities a full week out from primary day. It’s disappointing and unfortunate,” Richards said.

That release says, for example, that it’s not irregular at all that more votes were cast in Macoupin County for the interesting local primary race for coroner than for the congressional seat. Incumbent Coroner BRAD TARGHETTA got a whopping 87 percent of the vote over challenger KEN SNIDER, who retired as a master sergeant with the Illinois State Police last year after an altercation in a Carlinville bar.

Gill’s campaign had raised a series of questions about the counting process in Macoupin County in the wee hours of the morning after the primary. But Gill has been trying to get past that. His campaign statement this week relayed assurances from Macoupin County Clerk PETE DUNCAN that the process was transparent and meticulous.

“Dr. Gill believes what Mr. Duncan reported to him … and we thank him and his staff for their hard work,” Richards said.

Duncan told me Wednesday that only three three absentee ballots had arrived following primary day in Macoupin — and two of them are Republican. Duncan also said he is very confident of the accuracy of the results reported from his county.

Schedule-wise, according to JANE GASPERIN, director of election information at the State Board of Elections, counties have until Tuesday to count any provisional ballots or absentee ballots that were  postmarked no later than March 19, the day before the primary. Clerks have until April 10 to do their canvasses, or official determination of results. Those numbers are then supposed to be sent to the state board, which meets April 20 to certify results of each election.

And that doesn’t even count what could come later. A campaign has five days after the official result is in — the April 20 state board certification in the case of the 13th — to file for a discovery recount.

Illinois delegation to Israel
State Treasurer DAN RUTHERFORD is leading a delegation of Illinoisans on a weeklong trip to Israel that began Wednesday.

No taxpayer dollars are being used for the trip, which is hosted by the Jewish United Fund of Metropolitan Chicago.

“My 25 years of experience in the private sector working in international business makes me especially optimistic about the benefits of a visit like this to Israel,” Rutherford said in a statement.

In addition to meeting with Israeli Finance Minister YUVAL STEINITZ and Deputy Foreign Minister DANNY AYALON, he will also meet with executives from Illinois-based companies Boeing, Kraft Foods, Abbott Labs and McDonald’s. Also on the agenda are a visit to the Yad Vashem Holocaust memorial, meeting with an Israeli Arab journalist and seeing the joint U.S-Israel Arrow missile system.

State Rep. SID MATHIAS, R-Buffalo Grove, is also going with the delegation, as are representatives of the Jewish United Fund, including Executive Vice President JAY TCATH.

 “Our hope is that this trip and a series of meetings in Israel will lead to more opportunities for Illinois businesses,” Mathias said.

U of I coach candidate?
You can’t say that Gov. PAT QUINN isn’t proud of his basketball-coach brother.

I jokingly asked Gov. Quinn at the end of a Q and A with reporters at the Hilton Springfield this week if his brother — head basketball coach at Fenwick High School in Oak Park — might fill in as coach at the University of Illinois.

“Actually, he probably could, yes,” Quinn responded. “I hadn’t thought of that. Maybe I should encourage him to apply.”

John Quinn has been a basketball coach since 1980, his brother said. His highlights include having one team that had five players go on to play at Division I NCAA schools. He mentioned COREY MAGGETTE, who went from Fenwick to Duke University.

“He believes in strong academics,” Pat Quinn — a Fenwick graduate — said of his brother. “And a number of the college coaches he’s encountered think very highly of his fundamental approach.”

The governor didn’t even mention that John Quinn was inducted into the Illinois Basketball Coaches Hall of Fame in 2010 and is also a member of the Chicago Catholic League Hall of Fame.

“I’ll call him after we’re finished and tell him to apply,” Quinn said as he started to leave, adding, as he started down a flight of stairs, “He won’t cost $7 million.”

Ohio University’s JOHN GROCE was already being talked about for the Illini job at the time.

Bernard Schoenburg is political columnist for The State Journal-Register. He can be reached at 788-1540 or follow him via twitter.com/bschoenburg. His email address is
bernard.schoenburg@sj-r.com.