An Illinois state lawmaker from the area makes history.

State Representative Tony McCombie of Savanna got picked by her fellow Republicans to lead their caucus.

McCombie will be the Illinois House minority leader after Jim Durkin decided to step down after holding the position for almost 10 years.

Durkin called the midterm election results a disaster.

He says the Republican party needs to transform its platform to regain power in the state.

He says the key to success in the future is rooting out extremism in the party and moving toward the middle.

“I mean, this isn’t that the Republican Party that I remember from years ago,” Durkin said. “This is a party that should be embracing all people about who they are and welcoming them in, even though we may disagree on a few issues here and there. But we don’t reach out enough.”

Representative McCombie thanked supporters on Facebook, saying in part that she is not afraid of hard work.