Campaigns

Marie Newman gearing up for another primary challenge to Dan Lipinski

Illinois challenger came within 2 points of defeating the longtime Democratic incumbent

Marie Newman is raising money for another possible primary challenge to Illinois Democratic Rep. Daniel Lipinski. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

After falling 2 points short of defeating longtime Illinois Rep. Daniel Lipinski in a Democratic primary last year, Marie Newman is raising money for a 2020 challenge to the eight-term incumbent. 

“I want you to know the rumors are true: I’m actively exploring another run for Congress,” she wrote in an email to supporters Thursday morning. 

She urged them to donate via a Crowdpac site. 

“Right now, as I’m in the final stages of preparing to run, I need to know I can count on grassroots support,” she wrote on her Crowdpac page. “Unlike my opponent, I won’t be backed by deep-pocketed corporate PACs or special interests — the only way I win is if people like you step up to build this alongside me.”

[Crowdpac helps candidates test the waters]

Lipinski benefited from spending from United for Progress, a Democratic super PAC that falls under the umbrella organization Country Forward — the political affiliate of No Labels that exists to play in congressional races.

But Newman also had plenty of outside help. NARAL Pro-Choice America was one of the first groups to back her, airing TV ads attacking Lipinski in the fall of 2017. Other outside groups were slower to back her, but she eventually benefited from a coalition of progressive and pro-abortion rights groups that formed a super PAC called Citizens for a Better Illinois. That independent expenditure effort — started by NARAL and supported by the Human Rights Campaign, the Service Employees International Union, MoveOn.org, Planned Parenthood Action Fund, Planned Parenthood Votes, and EMILY’s List — said it spent more than $1.6 million on the race.

Newman tried to tie Lipinski to President Donald Trump during the 2018 campaign, which she’s continuing to do this year. 

“The truth is Dan Lipinski hasn’t changed since last year’s election. He’s still Trump’s favorite Democrat and still frequently votes against our district’s needs,” she wrote in her fundraising email. 

Lipinski, a member of the Blue Dog Coalition, is one of the most conservative Democrats in the House. He’s among the few remaining Democrats who voted against the 2010 health care law and consistently  votes against abortion rights. Lipinski attended this year’s March for Life in Washington after bailing last year because of Trump’s presence. 

Newman ran to the left of Lipinski on more than just abortion rights. In her Thursday email, she signaled she’d back the Green New Deal and “health care for all,” but did not mention a specific plan. 

Watch: What race ratings really mean and how we create them

Get breaking news alerts and more from Roll Call on your iPhone or your Android.