IL-17: Democrat Super PAC Dumps $1 Million in Four Days Against Esther Joy King

Cheri Bustos
Esther Joy King

Halloween panic buy to prevent upset loss of DCCC Chair Cheri Bustos UPDATE 4:08PM CDT The Hill take on Bustos race

Last Sunday, McHenry County Blog published its first article exclusive to IL-17 sharing how polling from early October revealed an unexpectedly close race between 4-term incumbent Congresswoman Cheri Bustos and Republican challenger Esther Joy King.

The article included the Republican-aligned Congressional Leadership Fund super PAC had just placed an Independent Expenditure (IE) of $433K in TV advertising against Bustos.

As more evidence, in the past four days, the Democrat-aligned House Majority super PAC dumped IEs totaling over $1 million, according to Federal Election Commission (FEC) filings in the past week, as summarized by Political MoneyLine:

What’s more remarkable about the $1,044,002 IEs is the way House Majority super PAC has gone about making the IEs — quietly.

Usually, the super PAC announces its IEs and which districts targeting Republicans, incumbent or challenger alike, through its weekly press releases on its website.

No press releases for the IL-17 IEs. Just the required FEC filings for IEs.

Guess one does not want to advertise the chair of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC) Bustos, who is #6 in the current House Democratic leadership hierarchy, could lose her seat.

Bustos is the only Democrat facing a serious challenger among the leadership, which includes, in descending order of power:

  • House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (CA-12)
  • Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (MD-05)
  • Majority Whip Jim Clyburn (SC-06)
  • Assistant House Speaker Ben Ray Lujan (NM-03, running for Senate)
  • Democrat Caucus Chair Hakeem Jeffries (NY-08)
  • DCCC Chair Cheri Bustos (IL-17)

The TV ad video from the House Majority super PAC’s YouTube channel:

OBSERVATIONS: What a clear example of a last-minute thrown-together ad that was rushed!

Citing news articles going back to 2010 for someone who has not run for public office before the 2020 election cycle?

Using a “moving box” background trying to highlight King as a carpetbagger from Chicago!?

King has been clear getting her message out she moved to the Quad Cities through her assignment in the U.S. Army Reserve in the Judge Advocate General (JAG) Corps to the Rock Island Arsenal.

She settled in Quad Cities and in addition to her Army Reserve service as a captain in JAG, she opened a private practice law firm within the district.

So Bustos’ supporters prove that desperate people will do desperate things, and that includes House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s aligned super PAC.

What do you think of the new attack ad on King and the million dollar spend to protect Bustos? Think it will play well in the IL-17 which includes Rockford, Quad Cities, East Dubuque/Galena extending to the outskirts of Peoria?

UPDATE: Late Saturday morning, The Hill published an article about the super PAC’s $1 million IEs. I didn’t see it until 4PM today, but I’m in good company about Bustos’ seat being at risk on Tuesday.


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