The $3.5 million man
Wow. I've been mystified as to why Joe Walsh, the most visible trainwreck of the Republican freshman class, changed his mind and decided to seek reelection in the heavily-Democratic 8th CD rather than in the very red 14th where he'd long been planning to run. Walsh got deliciously screwed in redistricting and wasn't left with a lot of good options: The 14th is also home to fellow GOPer Randy Hultgren, so that would have meant a major primary battle. But the redrawn 8th isn't really a district that Republicans have much of a shot in, especially baggage-laden out-and-proud tea partiers.
But it looks like we might finally have our explanation:
Walsh — lured by the thought of an easier primary and the promise, according to top Illinois GOP officials who requested anonymity and influential Barrington Republican Jack Roeser, of $3.5 million in general election fundraising help from House Speaker John Boehner — will now make a bid in the recently drawn 8th District, roughly centered in Schaumburg and including Addison, Elk Grove, Hanover and Wheeling townships.
Again, wow. Does Joe Walsh really think this money will be there for him? It's not like he'd even have much of a chance at victory even with such a huge infusion of coin, but I guess he's stupid enough to believe he might get it. However, I can't believe Boehner would be stupid enough to spend this kind of cash—or any cash—on a guy like Walsh in a district like this. And forget about the general election—Walsh might need the dough for the primary:
Yet [...] Walsh still faces a primary battle — against DuPage Regional Superintendent of Education Darlene Ruscitti and Barrington businessman Andrew Palomo. Ruscitti, who held an Addison fundraiser on Thursday, is expected to receive the support of several members of the Illinois Republican delegation over Walsh — including [Peter] Roskam, the GOP chief deputy whip and 6th District congressman, and 13th District Congresswoman Judy Biggert of Hinsdale.
It would be quite the treat if Walsh couldn't even make it past Ruscitti—something John Boehner is probably hoping for as well, since that'll free him from having to awkwardly explain why he isn't carrying through on this promise next fall.
Of course, what Walsh could really use the money for is his child support payments. At least then it would be going to a good cause.