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Rep. Joe Walsh's Failed Campaign Was An Expensive Loss

By Samantha Abernethy in News on Nov 8, 2012 9:40PM

Official photo
This election season was made more contentious by the piles of cash that flowed in unmitigated from corporations and brutal ads sponsored by SuperPACs. It was a very expensive election season, but this year more money did not mean more votes.

The three suburban Chicago congressional races ranked among the top most expensive House races in the country. In each of those three races, more SuperPAC money was spent on the Republican candidate, and each of those Republicans lost on Tuesday.

According to an analysis by the Sun-Times, Tea Party U.S. Rep. Joe Walsh's re-election campaign was the worst investment costing $70 per vote without garnering a win. Walsh and his backers spent $7 million on his behalf to Democrat Tammy Duckworth's $4.7 million.

That's a low estimate, too.

The Sun-Times added the amount SuperPACs spent on a candidate to the amount the candidate reported spending from his or her personal campaign fund in the latest disclosure available. Those mid-October reports do not reflect the money each candidate spent in the crucial final weeks of the campaign.

Democrat Bill Foster ($4.3 million) beat incumbent Republican Judy Biggert ($6.3 million), and Democrat Brad Schneider ($3.9 million) beat incumbent Republican Bob Dold ($7.5 million).

Here is how the candidates ranked in the cash battle, per vote—

  • Democrat Brad Schneider $29/vote (winner)

  • Democrat Bill Foster $30/vote (winner)

  • Democrat Tammy Duckworth $39/vote (winner)

  • Republican Bob Dold $58/vote

  • Republican Judy Biggert $62/vote

  • Republican Joe Walsh $70/vote

Money really can't buy you love.