Democratic Party of Illinois gives Justice Kilbride $1.25 million to support retention bid

The Democratic Party of Illinois has contributed $1.25 million to Illinois Supreme Court Justice Tom Kilbride's retention committee, according to a new campaign disclosure filing. The huge haul suggests the party is committed to ensuring that Kilbride, one of four Democrats on the seven-person court, is returned to Springfield this winter.

The DPI, which is led by House Speaker Michael Madigan, was Kilbride's primary funder when the Rock Island Democrat first sought and won his spot on the state's high court in 2000.

Now seeking another 10-year term on the bench through a retention election, Kilbride is facing another tough election. Tort reform and pro-business groups have targeted the 3rd District Supreme Court justice, who needs to receive 60 percent of the vote in November's election to hold another term on the bench.

The party's pre-election report, which details campaign spending and fundraising between July 1 and Oct. 3, shows that it sent Kilbride's committee eight contributions totaling $1.25 million.

Kilbride's committee must file the same type of report by midnight tonight, from which we will be able to glean a fuller picture of what other entities are financially supporting the justice.

Check out earlier blog posts for more information about Kilbride's other funders and the groups and money being contributed to opposition groups.