Scholz drops out of state rep race

Ann Knef Aug. 21, 2006, 6:59am

Former Quincy mayor Chuck Scholz announced he is dropping out of a race for state representative to battle a rare and life threatening liver disease.

Scholz, a popular three-term mayor turned SimmonsCooper asbestos lawyer, was making a bid for the west central Illinois House seat vacated by longtime GOP representative Art Tenhouse.

"Due to a serious health issue, I have formally withdrawn my candidacy for State Representative," Scholz wrote in a letter to supporters last Thursday.

Scholz joined SimmonsCooper "of counsel" in May and was expected to garner ample financial support necessary to unseat Republican State Rep. Jil Tracy in November. She was appointed in July to fill the remainder of Tenhouse's term.

Tracy, a Brown County attorney whose family owns Dot Foods, was sworn in to office the first week of July, replacing Tenhouse who took a position with the Illinois CPA Society.

Scholz was expected to help garner clout for SimmonsCooper in Springfield, much like State Rep. Jay Hoffman (D-Collinsville), who has served in a similar capacity for the Lakin Law Firm in Wood River.

"In order to live so I can fight for our region another day, I must commit all my strength to fighting the battle that is now before my family and me," Scholz wrote.

"You know I am wholeheartedly committed to public service and very much looked forward to serving you in our state's capitol," he continued. "However, the severity of the illness I face and my priority of being a husband and father have guided this difficult decision."

The 93rd District includes all of Adams, Brown, Schuyler, Scott, and Cass counties and parts of Pike and Hancock counties. The Democratic chairmen from each county have until Aug. 30 to select a replacement for Scholz.

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