2nd quarter is Underwood’s first $1 million plus quarter in 2020 election cycle
Wednesday was the filing deadline for congressional candidates to submit their campaign disclosure reports to the Federal Election Commission (FEC) for the financial activity for the 2nd quarter of 2020.
And given the fundraising success of McHenry County’s two representatives in the House, Congressman Sean Casten and Congresswoman Lauren Underwood each have over $3 million in cash on hand to be used for the general election.
The 2nd quarter FEC reports are the last campaign disclosure reports before vote-by-mail (VBM) ballots begin to hit the streets for voters who have applied for a VBM ballot. The earliest date the election authorities can send VBM ballots is September 24.
Here are the financials through June 30:
With the 2nd quarter FEC filings, here is the remaining schedule for campaign disclosure filings for all congressional candidates:
- October 15 for 3rd quarter campaign disclosure (July 1 – September 30)
- October 22 for pre-election campaign disclosure (October 1 – 14)
POLITICO Illinois Playbook on Wednesday cited Oberweis’ numbers, which were released on Tuesday and an early release of Underwood’s numbers prior to their formal submission on Wednesday to the FEC:
“Underwood trounced state Sen. Jim Oberweis, the Republican challenging her for the 14th Congressional District seat. Oberweis raised $250,982 in the second quarter, according to filings with the Federal Election Commission, and he has $373,417 banked.
“Don’t be deceived by Oberweis’ paltry numbers. He’s chairman of the Oberweis Dairy and has the means to self-fund his campaign. Oberweis already loaned himself $1 million for the competitive GOP primary, which he paid off to the tune of [$400,000]
$500,000. The campaign is also relying on financial support from the National Republican Congressional Committee, which has put Oberweis on its Young Guns list to support.
“That backing would need to come soon if Oberweis wants to match Underwood, who has the means to go up on TV weeks before fall.”POLITICO Illinois Playbook 7/15/20
McHenry County Blog did not receive any kind of statement from Oberweis’ congressional campaign, and none was posted on their campaign website or social media. Their spokesperson did respond to POLITICO Wednesday morning:
“Jim bought ads during the primary, and I would expect us to do more TV in the General Election.”Oberweis spox, POLITICO 7/15/20
COMMENTARY: While POLITICO and other news sources on Wednesday focused on the just under $251K Oberweis raised completely from donors, the number that jumps out more at me is the less than $39K Oberweis’ campaign spent from April 1 through June 30.
Yes, this was at the height of the initial wave of the pandemic and there were very few face-to-face events, with Illinois only entering Phase 4 of its Restore Illinois reopening plan in late June.
That said, compared with the campaign spending of the two Democrats, plus 6th district Republican nominee Jeanne Ives, the lack of staffing up Oberweis’ campaign has done over a 3 month period makes Oberweis’ campaign appears three months behind on important components for a successful fall campaign that will be needed, like opposition research, and the drafting and publishing of policy/position papers.
Yes, Oberweis with his wealth can write a check at any time which goes well into the 7-figure range at the drop of a hat. And as one local political observer noted, Oberweis knows his own money is better off outside of his campaign where it can earn interest instead of sitting in a zero-interest campaign fund.
So now at mid July, Oberweis’ campaign must begin showing signs of real life for winning the general election. While the humanitarian projects the campaign has been involved during the pandemic and the aftermath of the racial unrest are good, Oberweis, before this month is out, needs to show 14th district voters he’s focused on winning the general election.
Yesterday, a joint fundraiser was announced in Lake County in unincorporated Fremont Township hosted by Al and Kathy Salvi at their home in late July (more details to be published later).
Additionally, next month, Congressman Dan Crenshaw is headlining a fundraiser for the Illinois Republican Party in Bolingbrook.
Whether Crenshaw will do a separate event around the same time for Jeanne Ives and/or Jim Oberweis or other House candidates on the ticket remains to be seen.
But some high-powered fundraising help appears to be hitting the 6th and 14th congressional districts to prepare for the fall campaign, and the initial wave of VBM ballots hitting the street in late September.
Turning fully to the 6th district, Ives released the following statement yesterday:
“A year ago, I launched this campaign from my kitchen table. Since then, we have built an army of hundreds of dedicated volunteers, interns and donors who are tired of Sean Casten’s unfair self-serving agenda of special deals and higher taxes.
“We’re proud that an overwhelming amount of support came from individual contributors, people mostly inside the state of Illinois. In contrast Congressman Casten relies on corporate PACs and special interest groups for funding. While my donors both large and small are making real sacrifices to reach voters, Sean Casten voted for HR1 which would force taxpayers to fund campaigns – he must have forgotten we have $26 trillion in debt. That’s the difference between us: He’s working to line his pockets. I am running to protect your pocketbook.
“This race was never going to be easy, but if we raise enough money to connect with enough people — we win. I am incredibly grateful for the support and generosity so many have shown. Now we just have to buckle down and take it over the finish line.”Jeanne Ives statement 7/15/20
- POLITICO: https://www.politico.com/newsletters/illinois-playbook/2020/07/15/its-dire-say-illinois-mayors-underwood-out-raises-oberweis-a-divisive-tradition-wild-weed-sales-489805
- Jeanne Ives statement 7/15/20: https://www.jeanneforcongress.com/2020/07/15/ives-reports-strong-second-quarter-fundraising/
- Capitol Fax: https://capitolfax.com/2020/07/15/casten-has-large-cash-advantage-over-ives/
Update: Jim Oberweis Statement on Q2 Fundraising
Early Thursday evening, the Oberweis campaign issued a statement from 14th district nominee Jim Oberweis concerning the 2nd quarter fundraising for his campaign:
“During the Primary Election our campaign focused our spending on talking directly to voters in the 14th District in what became a highly contested and costly race.
“Since the primary, my race has become one of the most important races nationally. I have been promoted in the National Republican Congressional Committee Young Guns program to the highest level by Republican Leader Kevin McCarthy, after being added to the program a year ago.
“Despite the obvious challenges of raising money during a pandemic, we finished the quarter strong and are in a great position to win.
“The pandemic has not stopped our campaign.
“Now that the economy is starting to come back – we anticipate even more fundraising success in the third quarter. Our campaign is well poised to flip the 14th red in November.”Jim Oberweis statement 7/16/20