March 17, 2014
The second battle between Bobby Schilling and Cheri Bustos is officially underway. Sunday in the Quad Cities, Schilling launched his campaign to win back Illinois' 17th District seat.
In 20-12, the republican from Colona lost to the democratic challenger from East Moline by 53 to 47 per cent.
"The contrast is, it's about serving people not about a title. I"ve had a lot of people come up to me and say 'You've got to get back in there and run. We're looking for representation, we're not looking for people who are just going to be the Congress-person, we want someone who's willing to serve.'"
For their second campaign against each other, Schilling says he'll have some advantages - one is Bustos now has a voting record for him to attack.
"In an off-year election the electorate is totally different - democrats in a presidential with Barack at the top of the ticket - they win by 6 or 7 points. In an off-year, the republican wins by 1 or 2 points. So it's going to be a lot of hard work, but it's definitely winnable."
He also takes heart from the recent special election for a Florida House seat that was won by a republican.
Once the primary is over, he expects the campaign to get underway in earnest. Currently, Schilling just has a media coordinator, and will probably hire a campaign manager by May or June. Since he left Congress at the end of 20-12, he's been working for a property development company based in the Quad Cities, with clients across the country.