WASHINGTON – U.S. Rep. Raja Krishnamoorthi, D-Ill., has stockpiled an astounding $9,410,355 in campaign cash, according to new fundraising reports released last week that cover the first quarter of 2021.
That staggering cash-on-hand balance as of March 31 keeps Krishnamoorthi in the top tier of all House members – not just Illinois - when it comes to saving up and not spending contributions.
Only a few other U.S. House members keep more in the bank: California Democrats Rep. Adam Schiff, had $14.4 million cash on hand; Rep. Katie Porter, $11.5 million; and GOP California Rep. Devin Nunes, R-Calif., $11.3 million.
Since his first election in 2016, Krishnamoorthi, with relatively weak opponents in 2018 and 2020, has only been increasing his cash on hand. Consider this: When I wrote about Krishnamoorthi’s considerable fundraising in 2020, he had a cash-on-hand balance of $6,895,927.
In 2020, Krishnamoorthi won his third term with 73.17% of the vote after a nominal primary election. In 2018, he won with 65.97% of the vote and no primary opponent. In 2016, when he ran for the House seat vacated by U.S. Sen. Tammy Duckworth, D-Ill., he had a real primary and won that with 56.99% of the vote and the general election with 58.31%.
In each of his three terms, Krishnamoorthi has increased his winning margin. A dividend in storing up campaign cash is scaring off strong opponents.
It’s an open secret why Krishnamoorthi is salting away election money; he wants to run for the Senate if an Illinois seat opens up. Duckworth is running for her second term in 2022; Sen. Dick Durbin, D-Ill., was re-elected to another six-year term in 2020. Durbin is 76.
Looking at the top fundraisers in the Illinois delegation at the start of the 2022 election cycle, Krishnamoorthi raised the most in the first three months of the year, $1,248,130, followed by Rep. Adam Kinzinger, R-Ill.; $1,148,452; Rep. Lauren Underwood, D-Ill., $809,629; Rep. Brad Schneider, D-Ill., $449,502; Rep. Darin LaHood, R-Ill., $423,709; Rep. Rodney Davis, R-Ill., $393,760; and Rep. Cheri Bustos, D-Ill., $326,280.
And looking at cash on hand, Durbin has $1,127,501, while Duckworth reported $3,704,895. Here’s the cash on hand balance as of March 31 for the members of the Illinois House delegation:
Bobby Rush, $123,127
Robin Kelly, $1,076,115
Marie Newman, $244,984
Jesus “Chuy” Garcia, $171,627
Mike Quigley, $985,514
Sean Casten, $495,283
Danny Davis, $251,219
Raja Krishnamoorthi, $9,410,355
Jan Schakowsky, $783,579
Brad Schneider, $2,028,343
Bill Foster, $3,747,099
Lauren Underwood, $1,048,780
Cheri Bustos, $1,122,471
Mike Bost, $490,878
Rodney Davis, $377,103
Mary Miller, $134,837
Adam Kinzinger, $2,545,291
Darin LaHood, $3,257,211
HOUSE VOTES FOR D.C. STATEHOOD
The House voted along party lines on Thursday to make Washington the 51st state. The 13 Illinois Democrats voted yes; the 5 Republicans were no.
A reminder: D.C. residents have no voting representative in Congress. The official slogan on my D.C. license plate is “End taxation without representation.”
Delegate Eleanor Holmes Norton – the D.C. person in Congress – is not allowed to vote on legislation on the House floor.
President Joe Biden supports D.C. statehood; Durbin and Duckworth are co-sponsors of the Senate version of the House statehood bill. Republicans resist statehood for D.C. because it is heavily Democratic and not likely to change anytime soon. Adding two new blue senators is a non-starter for them.
Still, there is a bit of progress with Biden in the White House.
Press Secretary Jen Psaki said in Biden’s view, “The denial of voting representation in Congress and local self-government to 712,000 residents of our nation’s capital violates two of our nation’s founding principles: no taxation without representation and consent of the governed.
We do have more folks than Vermont and Wyoming.
Kinzinger is one of the few Republicans who, while opposing statehood, at least recognizes the problem. He is proposing giving the D.C. delegate full voting rights on the House floor and for allowing D.C. residents to vote in Maryland Senate races. Maryland is a fairly blue state. I don’t see this as a solution right now, and it’s not where the statehood “movement” is.
Many Republicans, including House Republican Leader Kevin McCarthy, only sees the issue in crass political terms, not as a matter of voting rights.
I don’t expect any Senate action beyond a hearing. A solution is still years away.
Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer said, “We all know that the minority party opposes D.C. statehood because it fears giving political power and representation to American citizens if they might not vote for Republicans.”
Said Kinzinger in a statement, “The American Colonies fought a revolution over this very principle, so it seems hypocritical to deny the citizens of DC appropriate representation in Congress.”