SPRINGFIELD -- Despite getting a late start in her bid for Illinois House in a write-in primary race, Republican Susan Sweeney of Park Ridge raised almost $64,000 in the last three months for her campaign against Democratic Des Plaines Mayor Marty Moylan.
Moylan, though raising only about $2,300 in the last three months, has way more in the bank than Sweeney -- about $92,000 compared to about $51,800 for her.
The two candidates are racing for a spot in the Illinois House from the 55th District, which includes parts of Des Plaines, Elk Grove Village and Park Ridge.
Candidates' quarterly campaign finance reports were due this week for the three months ending June 30. The big money in races for Springfield, though, will come in the months closer to November's elections as each party starts to pour funds into a handful of races they deem most competitive.
Case in point: Though the battle for Illinois House between GOP state Rep. Sidney Mathias of Buffalo Grove and Democratic state Rep. Carol Sente of Vernon Hills is widely expected to be a top priority for the parties, the candidates didn't raise much money in the last three months.
Sente raised $7,250, reports show, and Mathias picked up about $8,450, amounts that could seem paltry if the parties decide to spend lots of money in the campaign.
"I think it's going to be a very expensive race," Mathias said.
Both candidates say the race won't be about money and they'll raise what they need to by the end.
"It's a little bit early," Sente said.
The battle, created by once-a-decade redistricting, is the only one in the state between two incumbents.
The two are running for the 59th House District, which includes the Buffalo Grove, Mundelein and Vernon Hills areas.
Elsewhere, newcomer Republican Jonathan Greenberg, a Northbrook Republican, pulled in about $51,000 in the last three months compared to incumbent Democrat state Rep. Elaine Nekritz of Northbrook's $23,000. But Nekritz' incumbency means she has about $191,000 in the bank already compared to about $62,000 for Greenberg.
Campaign cash can help for the mailings, radio spots and staff that keep a campaign working, but early numbers can also show how healthy an organization is and even help draw further party help.
Here's how much cash some other suburban candidates had as of June 30.
Illinois Senate, 23rd District
Republican Carole Pankau of Itasca: $29,829
Democrat Tom Cullerton of Villa Park: $3,432 in deficit
Illinois Senate, 31st District
Republican Joe Neal of Wadsworth: $12,016
Democrat Melinda Bush of Grayslake: $27,347
Illinois House, 62nd District
Republican Sandy Cole of Grayslake: $27,907
Democrat Sam Yingling of Grayslake: $40,802
Illinois House, 44th District
Republican Ramiro Juarez of Streamwood: $2,384
Democrat Fred Crespo of Hoffman Estates: $54,862
Illinois House, 56th District
Republican John Lawson of Schaumburg: $50,295
Democrat Michelle Mussman of Schaumburg: $27,299