The Illinois Democratic Party is sinking lots of money into some suburban legislative races but none of that cash is going to state House hopeful Rich Voltair of Round Lake Beach, state reports show.
Voltair, a first-time candidate who's trying to unseat Republican Sandy Cole of Grayslake in the 62nd District, had less than $2,200 in his campaign coffers as of earlier this month, according to his most recent campaign disclosure report. Team Voltair received less than $1,200 in donations between July 1 and Oct 3, the time covered by the report.
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And none of it came from the party or its leaders, documents show.
Voltair said he was disappointed by the lack of party support for his candidacy but not surprised.
"The Democratic Party made a choice to protect as many incumbent seats as possible. That's a very good strategy, but (it) won't help me this cycle," he said in an e-mail. "When I told party leaders that I'm angry at the way the state does business and that I want to see real substantive reforms, they chuckled and then made no comment."
Voltair's latest disclosure report included three itemized donations: two checks totaling $300 from an aunt, and $250 from a Libertyville-based local of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers.
That's far less than what many other Democratic legislative candidates have received for their bids.
Take Democratic state Rep. Carol Sente of Vernon Hills, who's running in the neighboring 59th House District against Green Oaks Republican Dan Sugrue. Sente has received tens of thousands of dollars in donations from her party and its leaders in recent months.
Voltair said his campaign has printed 25,000 promotional cards to be handed out door-to-door, and most of those have been distributed. He admitted he can't afford mail fliers.
Compared with Voltair, Cole is on sound financial footing as Election Day approaches.
She had more than $54,000 in her campaign war chest as of Oct. 3, her latest disclosure report shows. Since July 1, her campaign received nearly $13,000 in donations from various sources. They included Motorola, a political action committee for Abbott Laboratories employees, the Lake County Farm Bureau's political committee and the Illinois State Medical Society.
When asked about the money flowing into the race, Cole didn't want to sound overconfident. There's still time for Democratic leaders to get behind Voltair's campaign and help him with last-minute advertising, she said.
"(House Speaker) Michael Madigan has sat back on a number of races and hit them hard in the end," said Cole, who's seeking a third term. "There are so many things that could happen this last week."
The 62nd District is in central Lake County. The seat carries a two-year term.