8th District U.S. Rep.: Duckworth Wins Again

By Kevin Martinez

Posted: Tuesday, Nov. 4, 2014

Incumbent Tammy Duckworth was re-elected to Congress in Illinois’ 8th District after easily defeating Larry Kaifesh on Tuesday night.

“I am proud of what I accomplished in my first term in Washington, and the results tonight mean that I will return to keep working to move our nation forward,” said Duckworth.

Duckworth was the favorite coming into election night, and ended up winning with 55.42-percent to Kaifesh’s 44.58-percent after all of the precincts reported.

Duckworth, who was the the first female Iraq combat veteran to be elected congresswoman, lost both of her legs and some use of her right arm while piloting a helicopter in Iraq. In early September, Duckworth at age 46, announced she was pregnant and expecting a baby girl in December.

After 23 years in the military, Duckworth retired from the Illinois National Guard in October.

Favorite to Win

Duckworth’s war chest was significantly larger than Kaifesh’s, who was a colonel in the Marines.

After the October quarterly reports, Duckworth had running totals of over $2.4 million and more than $1.5 million total contributions for the reporting period and expenditures, respectively.

Lawrence Kaifesh, who was running in his first campign, only had running totals of just over $240,000 and about $190,000 for contributions for the reporting period and expenditures, respectively.

Kaifesh called Duckworth’s party and conceded victory before the precincts votes had finished being counted.

Less Drama

Kaifesh’s Twitter page sent out a tweet Tuesday night reading, “Unfortunately, I must concede to @repduckworth tonight, but the fight to turn things around is not over!”

Things got ugly during Duckworth’s election season in 2012 against Joe Walsh. There was a television spot where Walsh was referred to as a, “deadbeat dad.”

Duckworth led 55-percent to Walsh’s 45-percent after 80-percent of the precincts were counted. NBC and AP then called the race for Duckworth.

 The Future

 Duckworth want’s to work with the people to help raise the minimum wage.

“No one who works 40 hours a week should be living below the poverty line,” said Duckworth during her victory speech.

Duckworth says she will continue to be the advocate for veterans, as a member of congress.

She says she will work to help veterans obtain, “good jobs, quality healthcare to support our military families.”

Duckworth wants to see comprehensive immigration reform to help boost the economy and so businesses can become competitive, but most important for, “our families and for fairness.”

“Some of you have been with me since 2012, some of you have been with me since 2006. I am grateful to have earned and kept your support,” said Duckworth, “I’m honored to serve you and look forward to continuing to work tirelessly for you at Washington, and here at home.”

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