Sean Casten of the 6th Congressional District in Illinois has spent over almost $500,000 on his campaign for 2021-2022 so far.
Casten was re-elected in 2020 after defeating Jeannie Ives by seven points, marking his second-consecutive victory within the District. During Casten’s first election in 2017-2018, he defeated Peter Roskam by seven points. In addition, Casten’s expenditures topped $6 million, which was significantly more than his total expenditures in his 2020 campaign.
According to the Federal Election Commission, Casten’s highest expenditure this cycle is for digital ads for $65,000 from Break Something LLC, which was also included in a 2018 expenditure article by CU-CitizenAccess about his campaign finances ahead of his election victory against Ives in 2020. He spent upwards of $86,000 alone at that time, as the company specializes in “Democrats, furthering causes, and creating change,” as per its official website. It is unclear as to what that expenditure exactly entailed, but thus far, the fundraising consulting and payroll expenses are his top two expenditures.
His payroll total so far is around $75,000, and in comparison to the 2019-2020 cycle he spent over $500,000 on salaries. Credit card payments for a variety of reasons went towards several businesses, including PNC Bank, Act Blue, Google, GoDaddy, and more. Act Blue is a software company that helps Democrats like Casten raise money from donors for election campaigns, while GoDaddy is a web hosting service.
According to SpendingTracker.org, Casten signed a $1.3 trillion bill towards the COVID CARES Act in April 2020. He has continued to remain in support of the COVID-19 vaccine, despite some criticism of the way the state of Illinois handled the pandemic as a whole.
According to Open Secrets, a nonpartisan nonprofit group that analyzes political spending, Casten has raised over $1 million during his 2021-22 campaign.
Voters from The University of Chicago have been a big supporter in Casten’s political efforts, as individual donations from employees raised an upwards of $52,000 during 2019-2020. Voters at The University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign also chipped in their fair share of recognition, as people donated a total of $27,867. Northwestern voters were the third group to show support, raising $37,659 during the campaign year. None of the universities made donations as an organization.
Casten supports clean energy efforts. The Downers Grove native made that abundantly clear with his expenditure to The Conrad Group. According to the data, Casten spent around $95,000 to continue his efforts of providing clean energy to the citizens that live in and around his community. The company also provides assistance with Homeland Security, Organizational Development, and IT Services for those who need and want the best experiences within their community.
Editor’s Note: This story has been updated to clarify university donations came from individuals, not the organization/school itself.