Camille Lilly handily won re-election as state representative to the 78th District in the March 20 primary election. Her win over Democratic opponent, Michael D. Nardello, can partly be attributed to the fact that Lilly outspent her opponent, a city of Chicago employee.
According to the Illinois State Board of Election campaign filing records, Lilly received $200,000 in campaign contributions, compared to Nardello’s $68,000. Lilly’s biggest contributor was the Democratic Party, headed by House Speaker Mike Madigan. The organization contributed more than $31,000 in in-kind contributions for payroll, postage and printing. The next largest contributor was the Health Care Council of Illinois Political Action Committee, which contributed $19,000 to Lilly’s campaign just days before the election.
Also filling Lilly’s campaign coffers were donations totaling $6500 from several horse racetrack associations and gaming companies, including the Crete-based Racing Association of Illinois, the Illinois Harness Horsemen Politcal Action Committee, and Pennsylvania-based Penn National Gaming, which operates 19 casinos in the U.S. and Canada. The 78th District, which stretches into the western suburbs contains racetracks.
State Rep. Lou Lang also donated to Lilly’s campaign. Lang is the sponsor of a stalled gambling casino expansion bill.
Lilly was in session Tuesday and unavailable to comment on her campaign’s financing.