What Does Daley's Campaign Cash Say About 2011?

July 21, 2009

Chicago Mayor Richard Daley has not yet said if he's running for reelection in 2011. And don't look for an announcement anytime soon. The mayor officially kicked-off his last four campaigns (see chart below) in the December before the election, around the time ballot petitions are due. If history's any guide, that gives us about 17 months before the official word. So to look for clues, we look at the cash. How much did Daley's campaign raise in the past six months compared to the same time period in his last four election cycles? (Note -- I didn't include the 1991 race, because it was a shortened cycle. Daley won a special election in 1989.)
For election year:Daley officially announced his campaign on:We looked at the mid-year report from:Daley's campaign reported receipts totaling this in the previous 6 months:And had this much cash-on-hand at mid-year:
2011N/A2009$21,001.78 $2,202,089.05
200711-Dec-062005$32,052.09 $2,571,310.67
20039-Dec-022001$195,496.46 $1,867,189.08
19998-Dec-981997$1,509,167.82 $2,098,252.77
19958-Dec-941993$999,451.40 $1,505,592.44
Source: Illinois State Board of Elections A big number for fundraising in the last six months could have indicated Daley was gearing up for something. But the tiny number his campaign reported yesterday doesn't mean he's not running. The $21-grand in receipts over the past six months (none of it from contributions; all of it in interest payments from banks) looks a lot like the same time period in the last election cycle. Keep in mind, the big Daley money rolls in closer to the election. Take a look at this archival gem from the Illinois Campaign for Political Reform. What do you think? Is the mayor going to run in 2011, and who would challenge him? And how much does the outcome of the city's bid to host the 2016 Olympics figure into the decision?