1978 United States Senate election in Illinois
Percy: 40-50% 50-60% 60-70%
Seith: 50–60% 60–70%
|Elections in Illinois|
The 1978 United States Senate election in Illinois took place on November 7, 1978. Incumbent Republican United States Senator Charles H. Percy ran for re-election to a third term in the United States Senate. Percy was opposed by Democratic nominee Alex Seith, an attorney who had been appointed to several local government positions. Though Percy had been expected to coast to re-election over Seith, a first-time candidate, the election quickly became competitive. In the last few days of the campaign, a desperate Percy ran a television advertisement that featured him apologizing and acknowledging that, "I got your message and you're right." Percy's last-ditch effort appeared to have paid off, as he was able to edge out Seith to win what would end up being his third and final term in the Senate. As of 2019, this is the last time the Republicans won the Class 2 Senate seat in Illinois.
According to an NBC News exit poll, Percy won 50% of black voters, 54% of voters 35 years old or young, and 58% of Jewish voters.
- Charles H. Percy (R), incumbent United States Senator
- Alex Seith (D), attorney and former member of the Cook County Zoning Board of Appeals
- Bruce Lee Green (L)
- Patricia Grogan (SW)
- Gerald Rose (SL)
|Republican||Charles H. Percy (Incumbent)||1,698,711||53.34%||-8.88%|
|Libertarian||Bruce Lee Green||16,320||0.51%|
|Socialist Workers||Patricia Grogan||15,922||0.50%|
|Socialist Labor||Gerald Rose||5,465||0.18%|
- "The Message of the 1978 Off-Year Elections". Time.com. November 20, 1978. Retrieved April 4, 2015.
- "NBC News – Live Election Night Coverage, November 7, 1978". YouTube. Retrieved August 28, 2018.
- "Statistics of the Congressional Election of November 7, 1978" (PDF). Clerk of the United States House of Representatives. Retrieved July 2, 2014.