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Rahm, Burke Top Richest Campaign Funds in State

By Chuck Sudo in News on Feb 21, 2011 5:00PM

2011_1_12_Burke.gif It's nice to be a Democrat in Illinois with an ability to raise campaign funds. The Sun-Times reports today that 31 of the top 50 war chests in the state are controlled by Democrats, led by Rahm Emanuel's $8.3 million fund for the Countdown to Rahmageddon. But a majority of that was raised before the state's new campaign fundraising laws kicked in at the beginning of 2011. Since then, Gery Chico has managed to keep pace with Emanuel in the fundraising department. Emanuel has raised $1.5 million this year; Chico $1.1 million. Emanuel's having to return campaign money from Jimmy John's executives didn't help matters. Chico's total war chest is just over $2 million.

Right behind Emanuel in the overall numbers is 14th Ward Ald. Ed Burke, with three different campaign funds totaling $8.1 million. Then there are politicians like Mayor Daley and former Gov. Jim Edgar who still have substantial campaign funds. Edgar, who left office 12 years ago, still has $579,369 in his campaign account. Daley is sitting on a war chest of $1.22 million

How the politicians can spend their campaign money depends on when it was raised and when they served in office.