Big money follows suburban legislative candidates
Suburban candidates for seats in the Illinois General Assembly are sprinting toward Election Day, and their growing campaign warchests show where both political parties are spending their money.
The theme of some of the top-spending races in the area is clear: There's no incumbent and the parties are battling for control.
In another case, two Illinois House incumbents are competing in the same suburban district, a result of redistricting that is not seen elsewhere in the state this year.
Candidates' campaign spending reports were due at midnight Monday, covering the three months ending Sept. 30. Here's a look at some of the suburbs' biggest fundraisers so far.
Where: Central and northeastern Lake County.
Democrat Melinda Bush raised $294,370.
Republican Joe Neal raised $51,157.
In what might be the most hotly contested race in the suburbs for Illinois Senate, top Democrats have sent a lot of help to Bush in the bid to replace Republican state Sen. Suzi Schmidt, who is not running for re-election.
Republicans haven't responded with the same kind of resources for Neal.
Where: The Barrington area, Crystal Lake, Lake in the Hills, Algonquin and Cary.
Independent Dee Beaubien raised $311,714.
Republican David McSweeney raised $171,151.
Those are big numbers, but they don't include the uncommon level of self-financing that's happening in this race. McSweeney has loaned his campaign $172,500 in the last three months and Beaubien has likewise given $96,500 to hers.
Though she's running as an independent, Beaubien has received more than $100,000 from campaign funds controlled by powerful Democratic Illinois House Speaker Michael Madigan.
Where: Parts of Elk Grove Village, Des Plaines, Park Ridge and Mount Prospect.
Republican Susan Sweeney has raised $321,258.
Democrat Marty Moylan, the mayor of Des Plaines, has raised $271,618.
Republicans have taken a special interest in defending this seat being vacated by Republican state Rep. Rosemary Mulligan. The party helped guide Sweeney through a write-in campaign in the primary, but Democrats appear equally interested in sending money to Moylan, who could swing the seat into his party's favor with a win.
Where: From Wheeling and Buffalo Grove in the south, running north through Vernon Hills to Waukegan.
Democrat Carol Sente raised $323,726.
Republican Sidney Mathias raised $150,012.
This contest between two Illinois House incumbents was created by the new political map drawn by Democrats, and the party has followed up by sending support to Sente. Republicans have sent Mathias support, too, but he trails Sente in the money race.