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Candidate filing for Illinois 2018 primary begins Monday

CHICAGO (AP) — It’s the start of a critical time for candidates running for office in Illinois next year.

Monday marks the start of the filing period for established party candidates running in the March primary. They have until Dec. 4 to turn in candidate petitions with signatures.

The March 20 primary includes races for the statewide offices of governor, lieutenant governor and attorney general, along with judges and county offices.

First-term Republican Gov. Bruce Rauner is seeking re-election. At least one Republican has announced intentions to challenge him and several Democrats are vying for their party’s nomination.