2016 Cycle: $134 Million Spent on State Legislative Races, Plus Another $39 Million Could Have Been

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The 2016 cycle will be remembered for the most expensive state legislative races in our state’s history … so far. In all $134 million was spent on races for the Illinois General Assembly and another $39 million remained in the campaign accounts of the the winners, their challengers and legislative leaders. These eye-popping totals do not even include the $50 million Governor Rauner recently added to his campaign account or the $10.4 million that federal superpac Leading Illinois For Tomorrow (LIFT) spent on anti-Trump ads that also tried to tie Trump to Rauner or the $11 million spent in the Comptroller’s race. It also doesn’t include the more than $2 million that the Governor’s IE, Turnaround Illinois, spent on ads promoting term limits.

Not only was there a massive influx of money this cycle but also significant amounts of money were moved around within the system making it hard to keep track of all the money without double counting it. Throughout the cycle we were tracking money raised to try to keep track of how much could be spent. Now that the cycle is over we have switched gears tracking money spent (plus in-kinds which is also spending) which makes it easier to eliminate double counting. See below for an explanation on the methodology.


Legislative Spending Totals

Here are the traditional spending totals for the General Assembly, this does not include transfers out but it does include in-kinds.

Spending and In-Kinds 1/1/15 to 3/31/16 4/1/16 to 12/31/16 Total
Senate Democrats on the Ballot $3,821,809.35 $16,657,087.82 $20,478,897.17
Senate Democrats Lost Primary $666,833.59 $12,679.03 $679,512.62
Senate Democrats Not on the Ballot $1,821,571.22 $1,238,002.10 $3,059,573.32
Senate Republicans on the Ballot $2,164,004.26 $10,567,669.76 $12,731,674.02
Senate Republicans Lost Primary $481,869.06 $23,966.43 $505,835.49
Senate Republicans Not on the Ballot $356,638.27 $215,149.77 $571,788.04
House Democrats $11,643,285.77 $26,966,853.71 $38,610,139.48
House Democrats Lost Primary $2,769,853.00 $61,396.66 $2,831,249.66
House Republicans $3,232,609.76 $29,153,040.89 $32,385,650.65
House Republicans Lost Primary $1,111,305.92 $72,799.22 $1,184,105.14
Total $28,069,780.20 $84,968,645.39 $113,038,425.59

$75 million of that total was spent in the House compared to just $38 million in the Senate. Democrats actually spent more than the Republicans, $66 million to $47 million, led by the Senate Democrats who outspent their Republican counterparts $24 million to $14 million. In the House the Democrats outspent the Republicans $41 million to $34 million but much of that was due to the primary, in the general election the Republicans actually outspent the House Democrats $29 million to $27 million.

And here are the independent expenditure totals for the same period.

Total IE Spending 1/1/15 to 3/31/16 4/1/16 to 12/31/16 Total
Independent Expenditure Spending $11,129,206.51 $9,671,956.91 $20,801,163.42

Taken together that is $134 million that was spent on state legislative races in the 2016 cycle.


Available Funds Left Unspent

In addition to that total there was money left over, here are the combined cash on hand totals for all of the legislative candidates as of 12/31/2016.

Candidate Committee Totals 12/31/16 COH
Senate Democrats $8,279,494.66
Senate Republicans $3,066,880.35
House Democrats $16,491,552.44
House Republicans $3,186,498.16
Total $31,024,425.61

And here are the remaining fund balances for the leadership committees.

Leadership Funds 12/31/16 COH
Democratic Party of Illinois $2,856,471.32
Democratic Majority $1,064,490.82
13th Ward Democratic Org $806,853.09
Senate Democratic Victory Fund $446,650.14
Committee to Support John Cullerton for State Central Committeeman $0.00
Illinois Republican Party $217,206.30
House Republican Organization $15,047.71
House Republican Leadership Committee $56,637.83
Republican State Senate Campaign Committee $185,031.76
Total $5,648,388.97

In addition to the totals above 114th House District Republican candidate Bob Romanik has not yet filed his 12/31/16 quarterly report, as of 9/30 he had $2 million on hand. Taken together there is still another $39 million left in campaign accounts that could have been spent this cycle and will likely be used as a head start for next cycle.


Comptroller’s Race

2016 Comptroller’s Race Total Spend and In-Kind
Susana Mendoza $3,908,050.85
Leslie Munger $7,103,305.94
Total $11,011,356.79

The Comptroller’s race cost $11 million. This total does not include the $3 million that Munger transferred to the party. Had she held on to that money and spent it on her own campaign this race could have even been more expensive.



If you’d like to view the raw data that was used to calculate the above totals and/or you would like to perform your own analysis you can do so here.

The main problem with trying to figure out how much money was raised or spent on legislative races in a given cycle has to do with the potential for double counting money that was moved within the system. For example, the Governor started the cycle with $20 million in his account, all of which he moved to the Illinois Republican party. In turn they either spent some of that on legislative races as independent expenditures, spent some of that on legislative races which were reported as in-kind contributions to the campaigns or transferred it to the caucus leadership committees (HRO and the RSSCC). Those caucus committees either spent some of that on legislative races which were reported as in-kind contributions to the campaigns or made direct transfers to the candidate committees and then those candidate committees spent that money on their races. If you’re not careful you could end up counting that same $20 million four times as it moved through the system and come up with $80 million when in reality it’s just the same $20 million.

In order to eliminate double counting you can look at only the candidate committees of legislative candidates and only the spending line item (not transfers out) and the in-kind totals. Remember, even though our D-2’s list in-kinds in the contribution section they are actually both a contribution and an expenditure. Add these up for all of the legislative candidate committees and you have your spending total.

You may be asking, what about all the money that the Governor had, or the state parties had, or the legislative leader committees had? For all of that money one of three things happened: 1) that ultimately got transferred down the chain to a candidate committee and the candidate committee spent those funds on their own race and is reflected in the totals above, 2) those party/leadership committees spent that money on behalf of a candidate committee and reported it to that candidate committee as an in-kind and then was reflected in the totals above or 3) those party/leadership committee spent it as an independent expenditure on behalf of a candidate committee and that spending is reflected in the totals above in the IE line item.

Now that the cycle is over just looking at the spending side allows us a much simpler method to determine the total amount of money involved without having to worry about double counting all the transfers of money.

Rauner Adds $50 Million to Campaign Fund

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As we put the 2016 election behind us and look toward 2018 and the Governor’s race in particular the parlor game of trying to speculate how expensive the upcoming election will be has heated up. Today Governor Rauner contributed an eye-opening $50 million to his campaign fund.

In the 2014 cycle Rauner contributed almost $38 million to his own campaign fund, but $10 million of that came after the election and was actually used in the 2016 cycle to help the Republican legislative effort. This fall when it was reported that the Governor’s personal earnings had reached $188 million, up from a pauper-like $58 million the year before, there was speculation that the Governor would spend even more this cycle. This $50 million reported today is listed as a contribution, not a loan, and while he could always refund part or all of it at some point in the future it certainly sent a message.

But in addition to the political ramifications of an influx this size the timing is also relevant. You may recall that the Governor gave his campaign fund $2 million in February of this year and another $5 million in September, in fact $7,750,000 prior to today for this cycle, however the contribution limits have not been lifted for the upcoming Governor’s race even though these amounts are greater than the $250,000 in personal funds that would normally lift the caps. Here’s why from the relevant section of the law, relevant emphasis mine:

5/9-8.5 Limitations on campaign contributions.
(h) Self-funding candidates. If a public official, a candidate, or the public official’s or candidate’s immediate family contributes or loans to the public official’s or candidate’s political committee or to other political committees that transfer funds to the public official’s or candidate’s political committee or makes independent expenditures for the benefit of the public official’s or candidate’s campaign during the 12 months prior to an election in an aggregate amount of more than (i) $250,000 for statewide office or (ii) $100,000 for all other elective offices, then the public official or candidate shall file with the State Board of Elections, within one day, a Notification of Selffunding that shall detail each contribution or loan made by the public official, the candidate, or the public official’s or candidate’s immediate family. Within 2 business days after the filing of a Notification of Self-funding, the notification shall be posted on the Board’s website and the Board shall give official notice of the filing to each candidate for the same office as the public official or candidate making the filing, including the public official or candidate filing the Notification of Self-funding. Notice shall be sent via first class mail to the candidate and the treasurer of the candidate’s committee. Notice shall also be sent by e-mail to the candidate and the treasurer of the candidate’s committee if the candidate and the treasurer, as applicable, have provided the Board with an e-mail address. Upon posting of the notice on the Board’s website, all candidates for that office, including the public official or candidate who filed a Notification of Self-funding, shall be permitted to accept contributions in excess of any contribution limits imposed by subsection (b). If a public official or candidate filed a Notification of Self-Funding during an election cycle that includes a general primary election or consolidated primary election and that public official or candidate is nominated, all candidates for that office, including the nominee who filed the notification of self-funding, shall be permitted to accept contributions in excess of any contribution limit imposed by subsection (b) for the subsequent election cycle. For the purposes of this subsection, “immediate family” means the spouse, parent, or child of a public official or candidate.

We are still more than 12 months away from the next election, the 2018 primary, so this action will not remove the contribution limits. The Governor and any candidates who file against him still have to abide by contribution limits, even though the Governor has a $50 million head start and even though had this $50 million contribution come in April instead of today it would lift the contribution limits for all candidates of both parties.

Eventually there will be no contribution limits in the Governor’s race, we repeatedly saw the threshold achieved in so many state legislative races that it will certainly happen in the Governor’s race. But we’re in a bit of a loophole in the language of the contribution limit law allowing the wealthy self-funders to stockpile large amounts of campaign cash without triggering the fairness mechanism that would lift the caps for the other candidates while they attempt to even the playing field. On the Democratic side some wealthy potential candidates have been rumored to be interested in the race, it will be interesting to see if they stockpile early cash in the next few months to get ahead of their less wealthy potential rivals.

The other interesting question is whether or not the Governor would have an advantage if the caps were lifted? There are numerous potential Democratic candidates but so far no rumored Republican primary challengers. If at any point the Governor decides he wants an expensive bloodbath on the Democratic side he only has to add $250,000 more, assuming that none of the Democrats do what’s necessary to lift the caps first.

Contribution limits in Illinois have done nothing to limit money in the political system, there is more money than ever, but the rules are so convoluted that they keep creating these odd situations. With divided government that isn’t likely to change any time soon.

How the Money Moves, Part 3

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In yesterday’s installment, How the Money Moves, Part 2, the last thing I wrote was “Also, it’s unlikely that this is our last unexpected development before the election. Stay tuned.” It took less than 20 minutes for that to come true.

Last night the Governor’s Independent Expenditure committee, Turnaround Illinois, filed a B-1 disclosing independent expenditures totaling $101,843.15 for radio ads supporting House Republican Leader Jim Durkin, who is unopposed this fall. When an IE committee makes independent expenditures supporting or opposing a candidate in a race in amounts greater than certain limits ($250,000 for a statewide race, $100,000 for all other races) the contribution limits are lifted for all candidates in that race. Section 5/9-8.5 (h-5) and (h-10) of the election code govern this process, neither specify that an opponent is necessary in order to lift the caps and I could find no other section of the election code that made an opponent a requirement to lift the caps. It appears that even though Leader Durkin is unopposed, this action will lift the caps in his race and his campaign committee will be able to raise unlimited funds for the rest of the year. As we’ve mentioned before in a general election candidate committees are allowed to make unlimited transfers to party committees who can then make unlimited transfers to candidate committees so leader Durkin will be able to transfer unlimited amounts to either the Illinois Republican Party or the House Republican Organization (HRO is registerd as a party committee) who can then spend or transfer that money in unlimited amounts on other legislative races as they wish.

Turnaround Illinois was created in April of 2015 by the Governor and his allies. Its chairperson is the CFO from the Governor’s campaign and its treasurer is his campaign’s chief legal counsel. Since inception the committee has raised $6.25 million, $4 million from former Chicago Tribune owner Sam Zell and $2.25 million from Bruce Rauner’s personal funds. The Governor spent the last few months touring the state in support of term limits which was accompanied by a television campaign, those TV ads were paid for by the Turnaround Illinois independent expenditure committee.

If the sole intention here was to lift the contribution limits for Leader Durkin they chose the more expensive of two available routes. The caps can be lifted either due to independent expenditure spending or self funding, Leader Durkin could have loaned his campaign $100,000 and then paid it back the very next day and those actions would have been sufficient to lift the caps in this race. However in this instance Turnaround Illinois spent $100,000 on radio ads supporting Leader Durkin, who is unopposed, so that $100,000 spent will likely have very little ancillary benefit.

This may be the most direct example to circumvent the contribution limits so far but it’s probably not the strangest. In the 2015 Chicago Mayor’s race William Kelly loaned himself $100,000 and filed a Notification of Self Funding which lifted the caps for the Mayor’s race, but then he never even filed the paperwork to run for Mayor so the caps were lifted for a race he didn’t even officially participate in.

If the contribution limits are lifted for Leader Durkin’s campaign committee his would be the only one of the four legislative leaders’ campaign committees that can raise unlimited funds, but this isn’t the first time that has happened either. During the 2016 Democratic primary Speaker Madigan had three opponents for his 22nd district House seat. Former 2004 Democratic US Senate candidate Blair Hull and some of his wealthy allies funded an IE committee Illinois United for Change and that committee eventually made more than $100,000 in independent expenditures opposing Mike Madigan or supporting Jason Gonzales (their preferred candidate) and for the final two weeks of the primary Speaker Madigan’s campaign committee, Friends of Michael J. Madigan, was legally allowed to accept unlimited contributions. The odd thing is that during those two weeks the Speaker did not receive any contributions that were above the standard contribution limits.

Update: The contribution limits for Leader Durkin have been officially lifted.


How the Money Moves, Part 2

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In the previous How the Money Moves I mentioned that it seemed likely Comptroller Leslie Munger would receive significant funding soon based upon how little financial activity her committee had shown up to that point. Since that time there were two key developments, neither unexpected: 1) Munger’s committee received a loan of $260,000, enough to lift the contribution limits for this race, and 2) late last week she received $2 million from Richard Uihlein and $3 million from Ken Griffin, two of the Governor’s wealthy allies.

Combined with the $280K Munger had on hand on 6/30 these new contributions gave her an estimated $5.5 million to spend in the homestretch of her campaign, much less than you’d typically see in a top ballot statewide race like Governor or US Senator but along the higher end for the other statewide constitutional offices. With her new ad on TV it was reasonable to assume that this money would be used to fund her fall budget.

However today there was an unexpected development, the Illinois Republican Party filed two A-1’s (here and here) for transfers totaling $3 million from Munger to the State Party. Here are a few possible explanations:


Possible Explanation #1

It’s possible that she is transferring this money to the State Party to fund a mail budget. State Parties pay a lower postage rate, that’s why you so often see General Assembly candidates file A-1’s with in-kind contributions for mail from the State Party. However in this case this seems somewhat unlikely, she’s already up on TV with her ad and $3 million seems like an awfully large mail budget. It’s very common for statewide campaigns to have mail in addition to TV, especially in those media markets where the candidate isn’t up on TV, but usually not at this level or at this proportion.


Possible Explanation #2

It’s possible that in order to keep staffing costs low she’s outsourcing some of her campaign activities to the State Party, where some of the Governor’s top political staffers are employed, and she’s transferring part of her budget to their control. If that’s the case this transfer would seem like an unnecessary step, her campaign and the State Party are allowed to fully coordinate strategy and tactics and her campaign committee could have easily paid any campaign expenditures that were needed.


Possible Explanation #3

Another very likely possibility is that her campaign committee is being used as an entryway to get unlimited contributions into the system where that money can then move freely around to be spent on other races. I discussed the need for entryways in my previous post. The House Dems have had a number of large donors, particularly in labor and legal, who are willing to contribute more than the maximum amount so they’ve had to break up those contributions into the amounts permitted by contribution limits and then contribute those amounts to as many Democratic affiliated committees as necessary to get all the money in the system. In a general election candidate committees can make unlimited transfers to party committees and party committees can make unlimited transfers to candidate committees so once that money is in the system the candidate committees with surplus funds can either transfer those funds to their fellow candidates up to the limited amount or they can make unlimited transfers to their party committee where the funds can then be redistributed in unlimited amounts to other candidates in need.

However in this case the contribution limits are off for the Comptroller’s race because of the $260,000 loan Munger received from her husband. Munger (and Mendoza) can accept contributions in unlimited amounts and if they so choose they can then make unlimited transfers to the party committee who can then spend or transfer unlimited amounts on other candidates, such as targeted general assembly races.

Prior to last week the Governor had been almost single-handedly funding the Republican legislative effort. The only other significant pool of money was in the Independent Expenditure committee Liberty Principles PAC which had raised $5 million since June, $2.5 million from Governor Rauner personally, $1.5 million from Richard Uihlein and $1 million from Ken Griffin. However the funds in the IE committee are somewhat walled off, independent expenditure committees are not allowed to transfer funds to candidate or party committees so if these donors wanted to use their money to help legislative candidates they could only do so by making expenditures independently. But now that the contribution limits have been lifted in the Comptroller’s race they can make direct unlimited contributions to Munger who can then transfer that money to the party as needed and it can be put to use elsewhere.

Just because Munger transferred $3 million to the State Party today doesn’t mean she won’t get additional financial support later to supplement her campaign budget, she may still very well spend $5.5 million on her fall effort if additional contributions are received. Also, it’s unlikely that this is our last unexpected development before the election. Stay tuned.

Data Update: Real-Time Data

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As you know I download the State Board’s data files every night. In most cases my data is current as of 9pm the night before. Usually the way this works is that the State Board makes a copy of their data available every night at 9pm and puts it on their FTP server and sometime around 2am my server copies those files and runs an update that lasts about 30-60 minutes and that’s how I display my data.

However the SBE also has a new filings list and makes that available in XML. I’ve been pulling each of those new filings and testing that download for a while now. For example this is the same page as their new filings page but with totals.

I’ve set it up so that my server now updates all of this data in real time. When it reads an A-1 or a B-1 it updates the data files with that info. So for example, last night Dale Fowler filed this A-1 at 10:59pm which is well past the 9pm cutoff (usually) for my data. Normally it would take a day before that showed up in my files (actually 2 because the SBE update doesn’t run on Saturday nights). Instead now it shows up right away in his financial profile and the race totals are also up to date. The only thing I can’t update in real time are D-2’s, in theory I could update the totals but I can’t get the itemized contributions and expenditures until I get those data files so it’s not worth pinging the SBE server so many times for so little benefit.

I tested this for a week before I put it live so I’m hopeful that this is working correctly but we’re coming up on the end of the quarter and the election isn’t too far away so it’s important to get things right. Please, please, please, if you see any errors or mistakes please let me know right away so I can correct them. There’s no worse feeling than getting facts wrong, I’m not that bright and I need all the help I can get.

Thank you


How the Money Moves

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Prior to Illinois contribution limits taking effect in January 2011 the four legislative leaders raised as much money as they could into their own personal committees and often a caucus or party committee and then each legislative candidate raised what they could in their own candidate committees and that’s how you could track the legislative elections.

But now with the contribution limit law in place the process is much more complicated. Our contribution limit law doesn’t actually limit the amount of money that comes into our political system, since the Supreme Court’s Citizens United decision there probably is no fair way to design a law that would effectively limit the money, but our Illinois law is still in place so in order to move money through our system first the money has to come in through a much more complex but still legal process. Here’s an explanation for how the money entered the system and is now moving through it for General Assembly races this cycle.


How the Republicans Are Doing It

Much of the Republican effort is being funded by the Governor. Of the $16,924,996 raised so far this cycle by the Illinois Republican Party $16,071,600 has come from either the Governor personally, his wife or his campaign fund, Citizens for Rauner.

Committee Cycle Total From Rauner Pct
Illinois Republican Party $16,924,996 $16,071,600 95%

Most of that money is being passed through to the two Republican caucus committees, the House Republican Organization (HRO) and the Republican State Senate Campaign Committee (RSSCC).

Committee Cycle Total From State Party Pct
House Republican Organization $11,257,997 $10,095,000 90%
Republican State Senate Campaign Committee $3,585,919 $2,193,000 61%
Combined $14,843,916 $12,288,000 83%

Only about $2.5 million of the roughly $14.8 million that the two Republican caucuses have received this cycle came from donors other than the State Party. The two caucus leaders each have their own candidate committee Citizens for Durkin ($1,452,457) and Citizens for Christine Radogno ($958,754). So for the 2016 cycle the combined total donations for the State Party, HRO, RSSCC, Citizens for Durkin and Citizens for Christine Radogno comes to about $16 million from Rauner and about $5.8 million from all other sources, this is an operation largely funded by Rauner with probably much more to come.


How Did He Do It?

Most of the Rauner money came via his campaign committee Citizens for Rauner, and most of that came in just a few large donations. During the 2014 election Bruce Rauner had personally contributed enough money to his own campaign to lift the contribution limits in the Governor’s race and that exemption from limits remained in effect until December 31st of that year. On 12/31/14 he filed this A-1 which included a $10 million contribution from himself, $8 million from Ken Griffin and $2 million from Richard Uihlein and his year end report showed his campaign fund with a balance of $20.2 million heading into the start of the 2016 cycle.

Starting in January of 2015 Rauner’s campaign committee could no longer accept unlimited donations from donors like Griffin and Uihlein but he was still able to personally contribute unlimited sums and doing so did not lift the caps for the upcoming Governor’s race because it is still more than 12 months before the next gubernatorial election (5/9-8.5 (h)). So far this cycle Rauner has personally given his campaign committee $2,550,000 in cash plus another $200,000 in-kind for data analysis, also he did refund himself $300,000 as well.

In a general election candidate committees are allowed to make unlimited transfers to party committees, and vice versa. The Illinois Republican Party, HRO and the RSSCC are all classified as party committees so Citizens for Rauner can legally transfer as much as it would like to any of the three during this general election period and then those party committees can contribute unlimited amounts to any of their other allied candidates either through direct transfers or in-kind contributions. Citizens for Rauner started the cycle with $20 million in the bank and added over $2 million more and has already transferred $16 million to the Illinois Republican Party to fund this legislative effort. While it’s barely even Labor Day much of that money is already being spent on legislative campaigns.

District Candidate Party State Party Leadership Total
Rep-20 Michael McAuliffe (i) R $28,005.00 $915,898.06 $943,903.06
Sen-31 Melinda Bush (i) D $0.00 $463,981.42 $463,981.42
Rep-62 Rod Drobinski R $30,771.00 $427,847.44 $458,618.44
Sen-31 Mike Amrozowicz R $55,554.00 $402,968.70 $458,522.70
Rep-71 Tony McCombie R $19,160.12 $434,298.81 $453,458.93
Sen-23 Seth Lewis R $54,672.00 $393,895.52 $448,567.52
Rep-62 Sam Yingling (i) D $31,182.51 $369,243.20 $400,425.71
Sen-59 Gary Forby (i) D $0.00 $400,330.49 $400,330.49
Rep-111 Mike Babcock R $17,938.32 $374,536.55 $392,474.87
Rep-76 Jerry Long R $35,874.00 $274,660.00 $310,534.00
Rep-112 Dwight Kay (i) R $54,501.60 $232,852.99 $287,354.59
Sen-38 Sue Rezin (i) R $40,006.00 $246,459.60 $286,465.60
Rep-45 Christine Winger (i) R $54,655.00 $223,693.08 $278,348.08
Rep-61 Sheri Jesiel (i) R $18,173.61 $208,395.60 $226,569.21
Sen-59 Dale Fowler R $15,890.76 $204,942.62 $220,833.38
Sen-23 Thomas Cullerton (i) D $0.00 $216,759.30 $216,759.30
Rep-95 Avery Bourne (i) R $61,398.53 $147,514.04 $208,912.57
Rep-115 Terri Bryant (i) R $63,028.69 $137,951.81 $200,980.50
Rep-117 David Severin R $0.00 $199,010.39 $199,010.39
Rep-56 Jillian Bernas R $31,569.00 $155,628.82 $187,197.82

This table shows the top 20 races (as of 9pm Sept 6th) for funding that has either come from the state party or a leadership committee and 16 of the top 20 are Republican campaigns. Lots of money, lots of early money is being funneled to Republican legislative campaigns already.

You’ll notice that of the four Democrats listed above only one is from the House despite the fact that far more of the contested races are in the House, that is not an accident. The way the Democrats are managing their money is quite a bit different, especially in the House.


How the Democrats Are Doing It

You might expect that since the Dems couldn’t match the $20 million in unlimited donations Rauner received on New Year’s Eve 2014 and don’t have his personal wealth they can’t match the Republicans this cycle but as of the last quarterly filings that’s actually not the case. The combined June 30th cash on hand for all the Democratic committees was about $36 million compared to about $32.6 million for the Republicans (including the Rauner funds). On the Democratic side the money isn’t as consolidated in leadership, at least not yet. Of the four committees controlled by the Speaker (Democratic Party of Illinois, Democratic Majority, Friends of Michael J. Madigan and 13th Ward Democratic Organization) the combined 6/30 cash on hand was $7.8 million. The three committees Cullerton controls (Illinois Senate Democratic Victory Fund, Citizens for John Cullerton for State Senate and Committee to Support John Cullerton for State Central Committeeman) had a combined 6/30 cash on hand of $5.7 million.

But where the real cash advantage lies for the Democrats is in the individual candidate committees. Not including leadership Democratic Senate candidate committees had a combined 6/30 cash on hand of $5.6 million, compared to just $1.7 million for Republican Senate candidate committees. In the House the Democratic candidate committees had an eye popping combined 6/30 cash on hand of $13.4 million compared to $5.6 million for Republican candidate committees. Again, those figures don’t include the four legislative leaders.


How Did They Do It?

For the most part the Democrats didn’t have the ability to receive unlimited funds into one committee the way Rauner did (there are some exceptions to this statement that weren’t utilized, like this one, I won’t bore you with the details) so instead they had to get the money into their political system through as many entryways as possible. For the Democrats much of that took place in the 4th quarter of 2015. The Democrats focused heavily on their allies in labor and the legal community to raise large sums and when those donors could not give any more to leadership they gave to various candidate committees, particularly those that appeared to be likely targets for 2016 and especially in the House. In Q4 2015 (link is for a downloadable spreadsheet) not including the four legislative leaders 19 Democratic General Assembly candidate committees raised over $100K (14 House, 5 Senate) compared to only one Republican Jil Tracy ($105K). Some of those prolific fundraisers, like Lou Lang ($132K) and John Bradley ($523K), are statehouse veterans who have worked on many issues and have had the opportunity to build numerous allies over the years so it isn’t necessarily surprising to see them with strong fundraising numbers. However many of the others are relative newcomers and it’s clear that the vast sums of money they were raising probably weren’t solely the result of their own efforts.

In the days before contribution limits the individual candidate committees were largely under the control of the individual candidates themselves. At times they may have been given direction by leadership and they were certainly asked to kick in and help the caucus when they could afford to do so (like the Republicans just recently did), but they still largely had financial control over their own committees. Under this new model it appears that some of the House Dems, the targets in particular, have given up that independence for more of a team approach. Each of these candidate committees that are sitting on large cash balances can make unlimited transfers to leadership if those funds aren’t needed it seems likely that leadership will instruct them to do so. It’s a model that offers these targeted candidates some peace of mind knowing that, if necessary, funds from elsewhere will be shifted to help them in their races and it gives leadership control over a much greater pool of funds, and in a contribution limit environment each fund is an additional entryway.

The Republicans are spending their money earlier than the Dems this cycle, even in the races where you can compare apples to apples that is no doubt true. But it’s also true that you’re seeing more financial reporting on the Republican side because the way the Republicans and Democrats are moving the money is different and those methods have different reporting requirements. For example, when Rauner transfers money to the State Party he won’t have to disclose that expenditure until the next quarterly report is filed on 10/15 but the State Party has to disclose receiving that contribution within 5 business days so we see that transaction. Then when the State Party transfers those funds to a caucus committee the same scenario applies and the same when that caucus committee transfers it to a candidate. However on the Democrats’ side much of that money is already in the individual candidate committees so any expenditures those candidate committees make won’t be disclosed until 10/15 when the 3rd quarter filings are due. In some of the most hotly contested races, like the four that appear in the table above (Yingling in the House; Bush, Forby and Cullerton in the Senate) the Democratic leadership has already started spending there and we are seeing those transfers or in-kinds, elsewhere it’s happening under the radar.

Soon the Democrats are going to start consolidating their funds into leadership. In the House you’ll likely see transfers from some of the flush campaign committees that don’t appear to have much of a race, in the Senate you’ll likely see the same from some of the more financially secure members that aren’t on the ballot this cycle. It’s only a matter of time and I’m surprised we haven’t seen some of it already.


The Comptroller’s Race

I’m surprised by how little financial activity there has been in the Comptroller’s race. It’s not one of the traditionally prominent statewide offices but because of the circumstances this year it’s been given far more attention than usual.

On June 30th Democrat Susanna Mendoza reported $1.3 million on hand but has reported only $39,000 since. Republican Leslie Munger had a June 30th cash on hand of $282K and has raised only $16,000 since. When Munger raised $111K in the 2nd quarter of 2015 it was the only time this cycle that she raised six figures, many General Assembly candidates are outraising her.

Mendoza will need quite a bit more money than she has so far. Looking at Frerichs 2014 as a comparable, he raised about $2.5 million in 2013 & 2014 and put about $1.6 million of that on TV, including buying $1.1 million worth of TV time in late August which were likely advance payments for airtime later in the cycle. We are already past late August, she has some catching up to do if she wants to run a campaign similar to what Frerichs ran.

It’s hard to tell what Munger is going to do but it doesn’t appear that she’s going to raise money the old fashioned way. Perhaps she has some personal wealth that she’s waiting to put in, perhaps she has a commitment from the Governor for a large sum, perhaps she’s expecting that some outside groups will spend enough to lift the contribution limits and then a handful of deep-pocket donors will kick in large sums or perhaps it’s a combination of the three. There must be some plan because you can’t run statewide on $282K, you can’t really even run a competitive House race on that little anymore.


The Others

Because it’s easier to move unlimited sums around in a general election and the battle lines are more clear there is much less of a need for Independent Expenditure committees in the fall, but that doesn’t mean we won’t see any. Personal PAC has added $125K to their IE since June 30th when they had $580K on hand. The Governor’s IE, Turnaround Illinois, had $2.2 million as of June 30th. And Liberty Principles, the conservative IE that played a big part in Republican primaries, has added $1 million to the $4 million they reported on June 30th.

We know what Turnaround Illinois is going to be used for. It has been paying for the Governor’s commercials on term limits that you have been seeing on TV since the Olympics. Despite his odd protestations to the contrary the Governor has been travelling the state campaigning on this issue and using his IE to pay for the corresponding TV ads.

It’s less clear what Liberty Principles will be used for. Since June they’ve received $2.5 million from Bruce Rauner personally, $1.5 million from long time benefactor Richard Uihlein and $1 million from Rauner ally Ken Griffin. All that money must have some purpose but so far they haven’t shown their hand. Maybe it will be used to supplement the Rauner/State Party money in General Assembly races, maybe it will be used to help Munger, maybe it will be used to reach the threshold to lift the contribution limits in key races so Rauner and other wealthy allies can pour in even more money or maybe it’s for some other purpose we haven’t even thought of yet. Whatever it is it will have to be done independently, the one rule that emerged from the Citizens United ruling is that they cannot coordinate with the candidates and according to state law these funds are now walled off and cannot be contributed to other candidate committees, party committees or PACs.

Follow along on our Twitter feed and you will be able to see all of the above play out in real time.


McHenry and St. Clair County Board Chairman Races

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I don’t have the bandwidth to provide resources for all local races but I do want to highlight two current county board chairman races in two of the state’s bigger counties which have had a number of interesting developments, each in some way connected to a local state rep race.


McHenry County

Let’s start with McHenry County. This year will be the first time that the county board chairman in McHenry County is popularly elected, in the past the chairman was selected by the county board, a change that had been advocated by State Rep. Jack Franks.

In the Republican primary Michael Walkup defeated incumbent board chairman Joseph Gottemoller by 3 points, 51.5% to 48.5%. No Democratic candidates filed to run for county board chairman in the primary so it was thought that Walkup would be unopposed in the fall for the general election. However veteran State Rep. Jack Franks decided to give up his state house seat and run for the post so the local county party appointed him to the empty slot.

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Despite coming from an overwhelmingly Republican area Jack Franks has been quite successful for a Democrat. In 2014 he won his state rep district by 17 points even though Rauner beat Quinn in the district by 34 points. If Franks hopes to win the county board race he’s going to need the same level of significantly outperforming other Democrats on the ballot. In 2012 Romney beat Obama by 9 points in the county and Rauner won it in 2014 by 35 points. Democrats can win here, Obama beat McCain in 2008 by 5 points, it’s just uncommon.

The one advantage Franks does have is in the fundraising department. He finished June with almost $575K in cash and investments. He has since added another $45K but $35K of it appears to be just converting his investments to cash. Walkup, on the other hand, had less than $2K at the end of June and has only added about $12K since, leaving him at a significant cash disadvantage.

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Other Notable Committees:


St. Clair County

The St. Clair County Board chairman’s race is interesting because of a man whose name will not appear on the ballot, at least not for this race, Bob Romanik. Romanik is the Republican candidate for State Representative in the 114th district (map) which runs from East St. Louis west to Scott Air Force Base. Romanik is a local radio host who is known for being outspoken and colorful, to put it diplomatically.

Romanik is no fan of current Democratic county board chairman Mark Kern and he’s paid for a series of local billboards to demonstrate as such:

Lately, though, Romanik has gained the attention of local media with his billboards in the Belleville community, which comically lambast St. Clair County Board Chairman Mark Kern.

His current billboard pictures Kern in a bikini with the caption “Mark ‘Sweetcakes’ Kern should have been a stripper. He’s already stripped us of our tax dollars!”

A previous Romanik billboard captured Kern alongside a clown and boldly asked: “Bozo and Mark ‘Sweetcakes’ Kern; who is the biggest clown in town?”

Yet another billboard during the Christmas season pictured Kern alongside an image of a Sasquatch (described as Kern’s wife, Erin) and declared, “We really don’t care if you have a happy holiday, because we’re rich idiots. We are really bottom feeders.”

Romanik was even charged but acquitted for trespassing at Kern’s home.

What makes Romanik interesting is not his rhetoric but his money. He put $2 million of his own money into his campaign fund and pledged to spend it not only on his own race but on other local races as well. Considering his confrontational past with Kern there is significant speculation that some of that money could be spent against Kern. Kern is apparently taking the possibility seriously, he just raised $100K from two family members, an action which lifted the contribution limits for this race.

Almost lost in all of this is Kern’s actual Republican opponent for county board chairman, Rodger Cook. Cook can now raise funds in unlimited amounts but so far he’s only raised about $2K for the entire 2016 cycle and he had less than $200 in the bank at the end of June.

While Cook’s fundraising has been anemic he likely won’t be the recipient of Romanik’s funds, at least not directly. In April the St. Clair County Republican Party voted to censure and rebuke Romanik using strong, clear language. Through a weird quirk in the SCCRCC website you can see their press release on the censure here. The party makes clear that they will not support Romanik and not accept his money, and that would presumably apply to Cook as well, even though he may be the beneficiary of whatever anti-Kern spending Romanik does undertake. St. Clair County politics will likely be interesting this fall, no matter what.

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Cook will have his work cut out for him, St. Clair County has been reliably Democratic and this is a presidential election year. Rauner, Topinka and Cross all managed to win the county in 2014 so it is possible for Republicans to have success here but Quinn won the county in 2010 and Obama won it by 22 and 14 points in 2008 and 2012, respectively. 2016 is not expected to be as favorable for the Republicans as 2014 was so Cook will need a lot to work in his favor if he’s going to be successful.

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Other Notable Committees:


Republican State Party Transfers $2 Million to HRO – Some Context

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You may remember that about two months ago Governor Rauner put $2 million more of his own money into his candidate committee and then a week ago he transferred $5 million from his candidate committee to the Illinois Republican Party. Well today the House Republican Organization reported receiving $2 million from the State Party. Any time that much money is transferred it is significant but this is significant for a number of reasons, here are a few:

  1. Fundraising by the House Democrats had been far outpacing the House Republicans. You may remember from our financial analysis back at the start of May the four committees controlled by the Speaker (personal, DPI, Democratic Majority & 13th Ward) had about $7.5 million available compared with just $1.2 million in the three committees controlled by House leadership (Durkin, HRO & House Republican Leadership Committee). Plus when you add up the balances in all the other House candidate committees aside from the leaders the Democrats have an additional $14 million compared to just $5.4 million for House Republican candidates.

    Further, if you look at all the likely targeted House races you’ll see that the cash available numbers are very lopsided for the Democrats. The Democrats fundraised heavily into their targeted candidate committees in the 4th quarter of last year, aside from the Speaker 14 House Democrats raised more than $100K (11 of them more than $247K and 3 of them more than $500K) while the only House Republican to break $100K that quarter was Leader Durkin. The numbers last quarter were a little skewed because of the primary but aside from Bob Romanik loaning himself $1 million the only other House Republicans who raised more than $100K last quarter all had primaries (Scobbie, Acklin, Phillips, Schofield and Bourne). So far this quarter Romanik has loaned himself another $1 million and after that the leading fundraiser (aside from Leader Durkin) is David McSweeney with $26,700.

    The House Republicans just haven’t been fundraising with any significant results, now the Governor (via the State Party) is sending in at least some of the cavalry.

  3. It’s May. In a typical budget year this is when many or all of the year’s most complicated votes happen. It’s going to be easier to hold the party and the caucus together when they know the needed resources will be there.
  5. The House Republican Organization will decide how this money is spent. With the Governor’s campaign committee so flush and the legislative committees less so it wasn’t clear who would decide how and where the money gets spent on legislative races. The Governor’s team could have spent this money directly on various campaigns on behalf of the campaigns they chose but by transferring this money to the HRO for at least this part of the spending those decisions will be made by the House Republican leadership team.

I’m sure this won’t be the last of it either. Stay tuned.


The Money Race for the State House (05/1/2016)

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With the filing deadline passed for the 1st quarter 2016 campaign finance reports (D-2’s) I thought it would be interesting to update our post from last quarter on the state of the money race for the State House. Since we last looked at this data we had a primary election and now this look gives a much better idea of the state of the money race going into the general election. This data is as of 9pm on April 30th.

Here are the key figures: as of right now Democratic committees have an estimated cash available advantage of about $2.1 million ($35.6 million for the Dems, $33.5 million for the Republicans). Looking at spending the Dems have already spent $26 million so far this cycle, Republicans have already spent $18.2 million this cycle and Independent Expenditure committees (B-1’s) spent $11.2 million on legislative races during the primary. That’s a total of $55.4 million already spent. When you factor in the amounts of cash currently estimated available and add it to what’s already been spent it means that even if no additional money is raised and no new independent expenditures appear we’re likely to see $124.5 million spent on legislative races this cycle. Wow!

Let’s take a look at the data starting with the current estimated cash available, here is the current cash position of all the committees involved combining the 3/30 cash on hand, plus the 3/30 investment total plus any reported A-1 amounts so far this quarter.

Current Cash Position

Committee Q1 Cash on Hand Q1 Investments Q2 A-1s Est Funds Available
Democratic Party of Illinois $2,429,001.87 $0.00 $26,500.00 $2,455,501.87
Friends of Michael J. Madigan $1,372,783.15 $0.00 $30,275.00 $1,403,058.15
Democratic Majority $2,333,149.51 $0.00 $91,000.00 $2,424,149.51
13th Ward Democratic Org $1,245,449.07 $0.00 $0.00 $1,245,449.07
Citizens for John Cullerton for State Senate $1,482,635.98 $301,506.32 $0.00 $1,784,142.30
Senate Democratic Victory Fund $2,229,955.11 $405,301.22 $0.00 $2,635,256.33
Committee to Support John Cullerton for State Central Committeeman $769,358.93 $0.00 $0.00 $769,358.93
Dem Senators Not On Ballot This Cycle $3,502,698.50 $42.36 $3,500.00 $3,506,240.86
Dem Senate Candidates $4,994,097.14 $220,007.00 $70,868.24 $5,284,972.38
Dem House Candidates $12,769,369.04 $809,320.66 $482,918.70 $14,061,608.40
Total $33,128,498.30 $1,736,177.56 $705,061.94 $35,569,737.80
Committee Q1 Cash on Hand Q1 Investments Q2 A-1s Est Funds Available
Citizens for Rauner, Inc $20,311,643.80 $0.00 $0.00 $20,311,643.80
Turnaround Illinois $2,254,635.33 $0.00 $0.00 $2,254,635.33
Illinois Republican Party $651,799.75 $0.00 $16,100.00 $667,899.75
Citizens for Durkin $780,472.40 $0.00 $37,200.00 $817,672.40
House Republican Organization $303,042.08 $0.00 $39,500.00 $342,542.08
House Republican Leadership Committee $65,277.40 $0.00 $0.00 $65,277.40
Citizens for Christine Radogno $561,536.37 $0.00 $26,000.00 $587,536.37
Republican State Senate Campaign Committee $517,892.38 $0.00 $13,500.00 $531,392.38
Rep Senators Not On Ballot This Cycle $912,951.84 $0.00 $8,500.00 $921,451.84
Rep Senate Candidates $1,508,708.01 $45,300.00 $48,707.53 $1,602,715.54
Rep House Candidates $4,281,283.44 $0.00 $1,135,461.66 $5,416,745.10
Total $32,149,242.80 $45,300.00 $1,324,969.19 $33,519,511.99
Committee Q1 Cash on Hand Q1 Investments Q2 A-1s Est Funds Available
Democratic Primary Losing Candidates $340,235.14 $0.00 $1,000.00 $341,235.14
Republican Primary Losing Candidates $93,896.41 $0.00 $7,765.00 $101,661.41

Going into the fall general election the Democrats actually have a little more than a $2 million estimated cash available advantage, but as we have seen the Governor and his allies are able to commit additional funds in amounts that are virtually unprecedented in Illinois politics.

Now let’s look at the same info while adding in the amounts that have already been spent so far this cycle (including in-kinds as spending):

Cycle Spending Ability

Committee Already Spent Q1 Cash on Hand Q1 Investments Q2 A-1s Cycle Spending Ability
Democratic Party of Illinois $538,072.80 $2,429,001.87 $0.00 $26,500.00 $2,993,574.67
Friends of Michael J. Madigan $1,640,020.17 $1,372,783.15 $0.00 $30,275.00 $3,043,078.32
Democratic Majority $871,977.99 $2,333,149.51 $0.00 $91,000.00 $3,296,127.50
13th Ward Democratic Org $272,060.96 $1,245,449.07 $0.00 $0.00 $1,517,510.03
Citizens for John Cullerton for State Senate $688,272.67 $1,482,635.98 $301,506.32 $0.00 $2,472,414.97
Senate Democratic Victory Fund $1,536,150.63 $2,229,955.11 $405,301.22 $0.00 $4,171,406.96
Committee to Support John Cullerton for State Central Committeeman $85,590.57 $769,358.93 $0.00 $0.00 $854,949.50
Dem Senators Not On Ballot This Cycle $1,698,911.71 $3,502,698.50 $42.36 $3,500.00 $5,205,152.57
Dem Senate Candidates $4,208,546.60 $4,994,097.14 $220,007.00 $70,868.24 $9,493,518.98
Dem House Candidates $11,203,399.75 $12,769,369.04 $809,320.66 $482,918.70 $25,265,008.15
Total $22,743,003.85 $33,128,498.30 $1,736,177.56 $705,061.94 $58,312,741.65
Committee Already Spent Q1 Cash on Hand Q1 Investments Q2 A-1s Cycle Spending Ability
Citizens for Rauner, Inc $2,624,772.17 $20,311,643.80 $0.00 $0.00 $22,936,415.97
Turnaround Illinois $4,001,086.86 $2,254,635.33 $0.00 $0.00 $6,255,722.19
Illinois Republican Party $1,663,295.77 $651,799.75 $0.00 $16,100.00 $2,331,195.52
Citizens for Durkin $550,350.74 $780,472.40 $0.00 $37,200.00 $1,368,023.14
House Republican Organization $656,686.28 $303,042.08 $0.00 $39,500.00 $999,228.36
House Republican Leadership Committee $3,286.25 $65,277.40 $0.00 $0.00 $68,563.65
Citizens for Christine Radogno $168,490.63 $561,536.37 $0.00 $26,000.00 $756,027.00
Republican State Senate Campaign Committee $693,245.16 $517,892.38 $0.00 $13,500.00 $1,224,637.54
Rep Senators Not On Ballot This Cycle $565,648.77 $912,951.84 $0.00 $8,500.00 $1,487,100.61
Rep Senate Candidates $2,282,987.18 $1,508,708.01 $45,300.00 $48,707.53 $3,885,702.72
Rep House Candidates $3,357,574.75 $4,281,283.44 $0.00 $1,135,461.66 $8,774,319.85
Total $16,567,424.56 $32,149,242.80 $45,300.00 $1,324,969.19 $50,086,936.55
Committee Already Spent
Primary Independent Expenditure Spending (B-1’s) $11,168,207.97
Committee Already Spent Q1 Cash on Hand Q1 Investments Q2 A-1s Cycle Spending Ability
Democratic Primary Losing Candidates $3,337,775.14 $340,235.14 $0.00 $1,000.00 $3,679,010.28
Republican Primary Losing Candidates $1,606,159.06 $93,896.41 $0.00 $7,765.00 $1,707,820.47

Looking at the already spent figures (and including the losing primary candidates) the Democrats have already spent $26 million and the Republicans have already spent $18.2 million, plus another $11.2 million was spent by independent expenditure committees (B-1 filings) on legislative races for an already spent total of $55.4 million. When you factor in the amounts of cash currently estimated available and add it to what’s already been spent it means that even if no additional money is raised an no new independent expenditures appear we’re likely to see $124.5 million spent on legislative races this cycle. That’s unbelievable!

Finally, here are the other top 25 committees that have notable funds and could impact the fall elections if they so choose.

Name COH INV A-1 Est Funds Avail
Friends of Edward M Burke $2,160,076.64 $6,273,896.00 $5,500.00 $8,439,472.64
IllinoisGO IE $6,149,225.57 $0.00 $0.00 $6,149,225.57
Laborers’ Political League – Great Lakes Region $3,023,155.22 $0.00 $0.00 $3,023,155.22
Citizens for Lisa Madigan $2,173,498.62 $0.00 $0.00 $2,173,498.62
Illinois State Medical Society PAC $415,826.75 $1,251,596.00 $14,400.00 $1,681,822.75
Carpenters Helping in the Political Process (CHIPP) $1,612,141.33 $0.00 $0.00 $1,612,141.33
Laborers’ Political Action and Education League $1,443,781.99 $0.00 $0.00 $1,443,781.99
Chicagoland Operators Joint Labor-Management PAC $1,128,549.69 $0.00 $263,144.71 $1,391,694.40
Biss for Illinois $1,360,488.45 $0.00 $0.00 $1,360,488.45
The Burnham Committee $1,307,346.28 $0.00 $0.00 $1,307,346.28
Support Independent Maps $478,768.86 $0.00 $686,500.00 $1,165,268.86
Friends for Susana Mendoza $1,102,541.75 $0.00 $0.00 $1,102,541.75
Stand for Children IL PAC $1,070,877.79 $0.00 $22,600.00 $1,093,477.79
Citizens for Alderman Reilly $1,012,213.26 $0.00 $0.00 $1,012,213.26
REALTORS Political Action Committee $941,494.05 $0.00 $16,700.00 $958,194.05
Roofers’ Political Educational and Legislative Fund $185,753.65 $749,380.67 $0.00 $935,134.32
Dan Rutherford Campaign Committee $13,432.35 $844,463.00 $0.00 $857,895.35
Citizens for Judy Baar Topinka $840,769.03 $0.00 $0.00 $840,769.03
Committee to Elect Joseph Berrios Assessor $831,314.73 $0.00 $0.00 $831,314.73
Citizens for Giannoulias $779,479.42 $0.00 $0.00 $779,479.42
Friends of Suarez $14,708.65 $750,000.00 $0.00 $764,708.65
Cook County Democratic Party $741,225.55 $0.00 $5,000.00 $746,225.55
Illinois PAC for Education (IPACE) $741,903.61 $0.00 $0.00 $741,903.61
Finishing Trades of Chicago Corp PAC $688,727.48 $0.00 $0.00 $688,727.48
14th Ward Regular Democratic Org $669,790.30 $0.00 $0.00 $669,790.30
James Pate Philip Campaign Fund $736.10 $650,000.00 $0.00 $650,736.10

If you’d like to check my math or investigate and calculate further the data I used to create the tables above can be found here.


Note: these figures are our best estimates and include some double counting of funds, which cannot be avoided. For example not all funds listed in “Transfers In” come from political committees that are already registered with the State Board but for those that do these transfers aren’t new money coming into the system, they’re simply transfers from one fund to another. If those transfers are from funds that are involved in legislative elections to funds involved in legislative elections (such as when Governor Rauner transferred funds to the state party who then spent money to assist incumbents Bourne and Wojcicki-Jimenez) then we are double counting those funds. The same goes for in-kinds, not all in-kinds are double counted but when a committee that is involved in legislative elections provides and in-kind to another committee involved in legislative elections (such as when the Speaker’s leadership committee, Democratic Majority, spent money on mailings on behalf of incumbent House Dems who then reported those transactions as in-kind donations received) we’re just seeing the same numbers twice. The only way to control for this double counting would involve manually going through and coding tens of thousands of transactions to determine if each transaction a) involved two committees that were both registered with the State Board and b) both funds were involved with this cycle’s legislative elections. That’s just not a realistic option so we’re left with our best estimates above.



2016 Illinois Primary – IE Scorecard

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Spending by independent expenditure committees has been massive this primary and may continue in the general. In some races the spending by IE committees dwarfed the amounts raised by the candidates themselves. Below is a table of each of the IE committees (I did not include IE spending by party committees) and how much they spent on their favored candidates as of 9pm last night (3/14/16).

As the results go final we’ll try to keep this table up to date.

Party District Committee Name Supporting Amount Result
R Sen-58 Ballot Access Illinois Sharee Langenstein
R Sen-50 Basic Crafts Council of Mid-Central IL PEF Sam McCann
D Sen-02 Chicagoans United for Economic Security PAC Omar Aquino
D Rep-26 Chicagoans United for Economic Security PAC Jay Travis
R Rep-63 Government For The People Jeffery Lichte
D Rep-05 Illinois Chamber IE Committee Ken Dunkin
D Rep-26 Illinois Federation of Public Employees PAC Jay Travis
R Sen-50 Illinois Federation of Public Employees PAC Sam McCann
R Rep-63 Illinois PAC for Education (IPACE) Jeffery Lichte
D Cook-SA Illinois Safety & Justice Kim Foxx
D Rep-22 Illinois United for Change Jason Gonzales
D Sen-02 IllinoisGO IE Angelica Alfaro
D Rep-06 IllinoisGO IE Genita Robinson
D Rep-26 IllinoisGO IE Christian Mitchell
D Rep-05 IllinoisGO IE Ken Dunkin
D Sen-05 IllinoisGO IE Patricia Van Pelt
D Sen-02 INCS Action Independent Committee Angelica Alfaro
R Rep-95 INCS Action Independent Committee Avery Bourne
D Sen-05 INCS Action Independent Committee Patricia Van Pelt
D Rep-06 INCS Action Independent Committee Genita Robinson
D Rep-26 INCS Action Independent Committee Christian Mitchell
D Rep-29 INCS Action Independent Committee Thaddeus Jones
R Sen-26 Lake County Life PAC Dan McConchie
R Rep-66 Liberty Principles PAC Allen Skillicorn
R Rep-102 Liberty Principles PAC Brad Halbrook
R Rep-72 Liberty Principles PAC Brandi McGuire
R Sen-50 Liberty Principles PAC Bryce Benton
D Rep-07 Liberty Principles PAC Chris Harris
R Sen-26 Liberty Principles PAC Dan McConchie
R Rep-74 Liberty Principles PAC Mike DeSutter
R Sen-58 Liberty Principles PAC Paul Schimpf
R Rep-110 Liberty Principles PAC Reggie Phillips
D Rep-02 National Association of REALTORS Fund Alex Acevedo
R Rep-66 National Association of REALTORS Fund Carolyn Schofield
D Rep-07 National Association of REALTORS Fund Chris Welch
D Rep-26 National Association of REALTORS Fund Christian Mitchell
D Rep-04 National Association of REALTORS Fund Cynthia Soto
D Rep-40 National Association of REALTORS Fund Jaime Andrade
R Sen-26 National Association of REALTORS Fund Martin McLaughlin
D Sen-19 National Association of REALTORS Fund Michael Hastings
D Cook-SA Personal PAC Independent Committee Kim Foxx
D Sen-02 Stand for Children IL IEC Angelica Alfaro