Former governor Edgar moves back to Springfield
SPRINGFIELD (AP) – Former Illinois Gov. Jim Edgar has returned to Springfield to live but insists he won’t return to politics.
Edgar and his wife, Brenda, moved back to Illinois’ capital city last week after almost 13 years of living in Champaign County in what he described as a “self-imposed exile” after he left office.
Edgar, 65, who moved away from the state capital after leaving office in 1999, explained in an interview with The (Champaign) News-Gazette that he enjoyed the time he spent living in rural Seymour on an 8-acre slice of property along the Sangamon River. But he said that because he lived in Springfield after college and raised his family there, he always expected to return.
His time away from Springfield was also intended to give his successor, George Ryan, some breathing room, he said.
“After I left the governorship I knew I had to get out of town,” Edgar said. “The last thing the new governor needed was the old governor sitting in town. So it’s been a 12- or 13-year self-imposed exile and I figured that was long enough. Plus, we weren’t sure that we’d sell our house and we did.”
The former governor and his wife moved on Thursday to their new home on Springfield’s west side, which Edgar said will also allow him to be closer to a farm and some horses he has to the west of the city.
Despite the move back, Edgar plans to remain an instructor at the University of Illinois and a member of the university’s Institute of Government and Public Affairs.
But he’s ruling out any plans to return to political life.
“No, no, no,” he said of that prospect.