In Money Chase, Pat Quinn Is No Rod Blagojevich

Who has raised the most money for the 2010 Illinois governor's race? The answer, believe it or not, is Rod Blagojevich. Blagojevich accumulated more than $4 ...
by | July 21, 2009
 

Who has raised the most money for the 2010 Illinois governor's race? The answer, believe it or not, is Rod Blagojevich.

Blagojevich accumulated more than $4 million for his reelection, until his governorship came tumbling down last winter. That's an incredible sum, considering that he raised that money two years before the election and considering how unpopular Blagojevich was even before his arrest.

It's in that context that the fundraising numbers for the new governor, Pat Quinn, are decidedly unimpressive, even if they have improved lately. The Chicago Tribune has the details:

Gov. Pat Quinn has traditionally been a poor fundraiser, but state campaign finance records filed Monday show that once he replaced the ousted Rod Blagojevich and vowed to run for governor next year, his contributions skyrocketed to more than $860,000.

It was Quinn's best six-month fundraising showing since he raised more than $514,000 in an unsuccessful bid for secretary of state in 1994 against Republican George Ryan, another disgraced former governor.

Quinn reported $702,448 in cash on hand. But one prospective Democratic primary challenger, Comptroller Dan Hynes, reported raising more than $905,000 in the first half of the year and had more than $3.5 million available to spend.

Hynes is expected to decide soon whether he's running. While there are some indications that Quinn can and will ramp up his fundraising quickly, the governor's meager total could give Hynes a reason to run and could also keep potential Republicans (all of whom have less money than Quinn right now) competitive.

On the other hand, Quinn has a good talking point here as he tries to draw contrasts between himself and the governor who preceded him. When you think about it, is it really healthy to raise money as much money as Rod Blagojevich?

Josh Goodman
Josh Goodman  |  Former Staff Writer
mailbox@governing.com

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