Recap of the race for the 17th congressional district - – Rockford’s News Leader

Recap of the race for the 17th congressional district


No matter what happened this election, Rockford was going to have new representatives in congress and not one but two. And they would both not be from this area.

One of those winners, Cheri Bustos is from East Moline.

"Great, we're feeling great. I'm as energized today as I was the day we announced. So we're feeling really good," said Bustos as she kicked off her day at Wired Cafe in Rockford.

Schilling stayed in the Quad Cities for the morning.

"Our ground game is very, very ready to go. And we're feeling pretty confident."

On Election Day, both 17th district candidates, Cheri Bustos and Bobby Schilling hide signs of excitement, fear, nerves and settle down in the Quad Cities.

Hours north, Rockford, the new kid on the block quickly becomes a key player in the race for the district.

"Critical, absolutely critical," said Bustos.

"Getting up into the Rockford area 40 some times plus," said Schilling.

Both candidates spent ample time campaigning in the district's newest addition.

"We went up there a lot, we visited a lot of people, met a lot of people. I just feel very honored that the folks in Rockford felt that we were the best person to serve them in congress," said Bustos.

Bustos unseats Schilling and a historically democratic district resurfaces after a controversial map redraw.

Now there's work to do. Bustos knows she'll be busy in her first 100 days in Washington.

"We're going to figure out, what's good about federal government, what do we need to work on, what regulations make sense, what don't. How can we get the economy going again? How can we address that double digit unemployment in the northern part of this district."

Cheri Bustos took just over half of the district's votes. When Congressman Schilling's term is up he says he'll go back to his small business, a pizza place in the Quad Cities.

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