Saturday, February 18, 2006

Follow the Money

What does a person do with $1,005,313? If the person is a congressional incumbent like John Shimkus (IL-19), that is a campaign war chest for re-election (IF he chooses to campaign for himself instead of someone else like he did in 2004). Some of it will probably be donations for the re-election of Tom DeLay (TX-22), election of Peter Roskam (IL-06), or to one of the many national funds for Republican campaigns.

The money comes from many different political action committees from many interests (in addition to individuals):

  1. Energy, Natural Resources -- 66,400
  2. Health Care -- 58,000
  3. Communication, Technology -- 44,953
  4. Organized Labor -- 42,500
  5. Finance, Insurance -- 25,500
  6. Business - Retail, Services -- 22,000
  7. Transportation -- 18,180
  8. Agriculture -- 18,165
  9. Manufacturing -- 12,690
  10. Single-Issue Groups -- 8,000
  11. Real Estate/Construction -- 7,000
  12. Law -- 1,500
The amounts are just for the 2005 – 2006 Election Cycle. For a “market conservative Republican” that consistently votes against pro-labor legislation, Organized Labor’s donations rank as the fourth highest on the list of 12 interest areas.

Rep. Shimkus has acquired $2,788,271 in campaign donations since he entered Congress. Of that amount, Labor has given $146,424:

AIR LINE PILOTS ASSOC. PAC -- 3,500
AMALGAMATED TRANSIT UNION-COPE -- 2,500
AFGE PAC -- 8,000
AFSCME -- 3,500
UNITED BROTHERHOOD CARPENTERS & JOINERS -- 18,924
(EPEC)/INT'L UNION OPERATING ENGINEERS -- 7,000
INT'L ASSOCIATION FIREFIGHTERS PAC -- 14,500
INT'L BROTHERHOOD BOILERMAKERS -- 12,500
INT'L BROTHERHOOD ELECTRICAL WORKERS -- 12,500
INT'L UNION PAINTERS & ALLIED TRADES -- 3,000
LABORERS' INTERNATIONAL UNION OF NA -- 9,500
MIDWEST REGION LABORERS' POLITICAL LEAGUE -- 14,500
NEA FUND FOR CHILDREN & PUBLIC ED -- 1,000
BUILDING & CONSTRUCTION TRADES DEPT -- 5,000
BUILDING & CONSTRUCTION TRADES DEPT AFL-CIO -- 1,000
TRANSPORT WORKERS UNION -- 3,500
TRANSPORTATION TRADES DEPT AFL-CIO (TTD/PAC) -- 500
TREASURY EMPLOYEES PAC -- 2,000
UNITED ASSOC. POLITICAL EDUCATION COMMITTEE -- 500
UMWA COAL MINERS PAC -- 12,000
UNITEHERE T I P - 'TO INSURE PROGRESS' -- 1,000

IL-19 has the highest unemployment rate in the state. Quality of life for members of Organized Labor has gone down not up following the election of the Collinsville politician. Obviously, Labor continues contributing membership dues believing they will get different results by doing the same thing. According to Albert Einstein, that is the definition of “Insanity”.

IL residents deserve better.

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