* The Post-Dispatch looks at the DCCC’s alleged problems recruiting a candidate against freshman US Rep. Mike Bost…
In Illinois’ 12th Congressional district, national Democrats got a turndown earlier this summer when St. Clair County Sheriff Rick Watson decided not to run after being courted by the DCCC. The district covers part of the Metro East and Southern Illinois.
“It’s surprising that Democrats haven’t found a top recruit in the 12th District,” [Nathan Gonzales Editor & Publisher of The Rothenberg & Gonzales Political Report] said. “This is a district Democrats (in the Legislature) drew to elect a Democrat. They lost the seat in a terrible midterm election, but there shouldn’t be a lot of excuses as to why they can’t find someone to run in a presidential year.”
He said that Bost, 54, a longtime member of the Illinois House, is “easy to underestimate as a candidate.”
“It’s hard to see how Democrats get anywhere near a (U.S.) House majority without winning this seat,” Gonzales said.
Gonzales is absolutely right about the dangers of underestimating Bost as a candidate. The DCCC did that last year and got its clock cleaned.
But the reason that the DCCC is having “troubles” there is that it refuses to bow to the wishes of the St. Clair County Democrats, who have their own candidate - CJ Baricevic. The D-trip doesn’t want anything to do with Baricevic, but St. Clair will control that Democratic primary, so unless they have something really meaty on the guy, they should probably just back the heck off because they’re gonna lose. And if they do have something on him, then it’s oppo dump time. The filing process officially kicks off next week.
* And speaking of the Rothenberg & Gonzales Political Report…
Illinois’ 15th District.
* State Sen. Kyle McCarter is openly talking about challenging Rep. John Shimkus in the GOP primary. McCarter discussed the possibility with fellow Republicans before and on the recent Family-PAC cruise on Lake Michigan. Local sources caution that there can be a large gap between what McCarter says and does, and he would need financial help from an outside, anti-establishment group, but it’s worth keeping an eye on. Shimkus had $1.2 million in the bank on June 30 and would have the support of GOP Gov. Bruce Rauner.
McCarter floated his name for lieutenant governor in the run-up to 2014. He doesn’t seem to enjoy being in the Illinois Senate, but a move against Shimkus would likely be futile.
* Moving northward…
Villa Park Village President Deborah Bullwinkel announced plans Tuesday to run for the Democratic House nomination in the 8th Congressional District.
Bullwinkel joins Raja Krishnamoorthi of Schaumburg and state Sen. Michael Noland of Elgin in trying to succeed U.S. Rep. Tammy Duckworth. The two-term congresswoman is vying for the U.S. Senate seat held by Republican Mark Kirk, who is seeking re-election.
Bullwinkel, 47, is in her first term as village president of the DuPage County suburb after first being elected to the Village Board in 2009. In announcing her congressional bid, she stressed her gender while attacking the Republican-controlled House.
If she can raise some money, being the only woman in a three-person race could very well be a big help in a Dem primary. But Raja has raised a ton of money and has been solidifying his endorsements, so it ain’t gonna be easy.