Difference between revisions of "Bill Foster"

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===Legislative actions===
===Legislative actions===
====113th Congress====
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Revision as of 13:06, 16 September 2013

Bill Foster
Bill Foster.jpg
U.S. House, Illinois, District 11
In office
January 2013-Present
Term ends
January 3, 2015
Years in position 2
PredecessorAdam Kinzinger (R)
Base salary$174,000/year
Elections and appointments
First electedNovember 6, 2012
Next generalNovember 4, 2014
Campaign $$12,182,689
Term limitsN/A
Prior offices
U.S. House, Illinois, District 14
Bachelor'sUniversity of Wisconsin
Ph.D.Harvard University
Date of birthOct. 7, 1955
Place of birthMadison, Wisconsin
Net worth$17,891,011
Office website
Campaign website
Bill Foster campaign logo
Bill Foster (b. October 7, 1955, in Madison, Wisconsin) is a Democratic member of the U.S. House representing the 11th Congressional District of Illinois since 2013.

Foster was a Democratic member of the U.S. House representing the 14th district of Illinois, but was unseated in the 2010 election. He is one of nine individuals elected to U.S. House in 2012 who have prior congressional experience, and one of five House Democrats ousted in 2010 who came back to unseat freshman Republican members two years later.[1][2]

He is set to run for re-election to the U.S. House in 2014. If he runs, he will seek the Democratic nomination in the primary election.The general election took place November 4, 2014.

Based on analysis of multiple outside rankings, Foster is an average Democratic member of Congress, meaning he will vote with the Democratic Party on the majority of bills.


Below is an abbreviated outline of Foster's academic, professional and political career[3]

  • 2013-Present: Representative, U.S. House, Illinois, District 11
  • 2008-2010: Representative U.S. House, Illinois, District 14
  • 1990-2006: Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory (Fermilab), High-energy physicist and particle accelerator designer
  • 1975-2007: Co-founded Electronic Theatre Controls, Inc

Committee assignments

U.S. House


Foster serves on the following committees:[4]


Campaign themes


Foster's major campaign themes included: [5]

  • Moving the Economy Forward
  • Creating Jobs
  • Reviving American Manufacturing
  • Reforming Wall Street
  • Fiscal Responsibility
  • Energy that is Safe, Secure, and Affordable
  • Health Care
  • Science and Technology
  • Education

Specific Votes

Rep. Foster voted for TARP.[6] According to a Gallup poll from September 13, 2010, 61% of Americans disapprove of TARP, while 37% approve.[7]

Foster also supported the auto bailout.[8] As of September 13, 2010: 56% of Americans disapproved of the auto bailout, while 43% supported it.[9]

In addition, Rep. Foster voted for the stimulus bill.[10] 57% of U.S. voters believe that the stimulus has either hurt the economy (36%) or had no impact (21%). 38% believe the stimulus helped the economy. [11]

Foster also voted in favor of the "Cash for Clunkers" bill.[12] According to a June 2009 Rasmussen Reports poll, 54% of likely U.S. voters opposed Cash for Clunkers, while 35% supported it.[13]

Finally, Foster voted in favor of the health care reform bill.[14] 57% of likely voters at least somewhat favor repeal of the health care reform bill, including 46% who strongly favor repeal. 35% of likely voters oppose repeal. 51% of likely voters believe the health care reform bill will be bad for the country, while 36% believe it will be beneficial.[15]

Legislative actions

113th Congress

The second session of the 113th Congress enacted into law 224 out of the 3215 introduced bills (7 percent). Comparatively, the 112th Congress had 4.2 percent of introduced bills enacted into law in the second session.[16] For more information pertaining to Foster's voting record in the 113th Congress, please see the below sections.[17]

National security




Social issues



See also: Illinois' 11th congressional district elections, 2014

Foster is set to run for re-election to the U.S. House in 2014. If he runs, he will seek the Democratic nomination in the primary election.The general election took place November 4, 2014.


See also: Illinois' 11th congressional district elections, 2012

Foster defeated Republican candidate Judy Biggert for the open seat.[18] Foster ran in the 2012 election for the U.S. House, representing Illinois' 11th District. Foster ran on the Democratic ticket. [19] The signature filing deadline was December 27, 2011, with the primary taking place on March 20, 2012.

Foster defeated candidates James Hickey and Juan Thomas in the Democratic primary on March 20, 2012.[20] Judy Biggert ran unopposed in the Republican primary.[20] Foster defeated Biggert in the general election on November 6, 2012.

U.S. House, Illinois District 11 General Election, 2012
Party Candidate Vote % Votes
     Democratic Green check mark transparent.pngBill Foster 58.6% 148,928
     Republican Judy Biggert Incumbent 41.4% 105,348
Total Votes 254,276
Source: Illinois Board of Elections "2012 General Election Official Vote Totals"
U.S. House, Illinois District 11 Democratic Primary, 2012
Candidate Vote % Votes
Green check mark transparent.pngBill Foster 58.5% 12,126
Juan Thomas 25.1% 5,212
Jim Hickey 16.4% 3,399
Total Votes 20,737


In a debate held against Judy Biggert on Saturday October 13 2012, candidates went back and forth on careers, voting histories and choices made in office. While both sides made accusations that the other did not support the district in certain ways or made bad choices, both agreed on certain areas which need continued help. Budget concerns and Medicare were the main topics of debate between the two candidates.[21]

Full history


District 11 Representative Election
Poll Judy Biggert Bill FosterUndecidedSample Size
"District 11 Poll"
Note: The polls above may not reflect all polls that have been conducted in this race. Those displayed are a random sampling chosen by Ballotpedia staff. If you would like to nominate another poll for inclusion in the table, send an email to editor@ballotpedia.org.

Campaign donors

Comprehensive donor information for Foster is available dating back to 2008. Based on available campaign finance records, Foster raised a total of $12,182,689 during that time period. This information was last updated on April 5, 2013.[24]

Bill Foster's Campaign Contribution History
Year Office Result Contributions
2012 U.S. House (Illinois, District 11) Won $3,460,892
2010 U.S. House (Illinois, District 14) Defeated $3,804,082
2008 U.S. House (Illinois, District 14) Won $4,917,715
Grand Total Raised $12,182,689


Candidates for Congress are required to file up to seven main reports with the Federal Election Commission during the 2014 elections season. Below are Foster's reports.[25]

Bill Foster (2014) Campaign Finance Reports
ReportDate FiledBeginning BalanceTotal Contributions
for Reporting Period
ExpendituresCash on Hand
April Quarterly[26]7/15/2013$8,997.93$2,222,236.00$(41,696.13)$189,537.80
July Quarterly[27]7/15/2013$189,537.80$275,258.51$(92,525.48)$372,270.83
Running totals


Breakdown of the source of Foster's campaign funds before the 2012 election.

Foster won election to the U.S. House in 2012. During that election cycle, Foster's campaign committee raised a total of $3,460,892 and spent $3,532,806.[28] This is more than the average $1.5 million spent by House winners in 2012.[29]

Cost per vote

Foster spent $23.72 per vote received in 2012.

As of July 10, 2012 Foster raised $475,000 in the second quarter, and had $1.3 million in cash-on-hand.[30]

On October 15, 2012, quarterly reports were submitted by campaigns to the Federal Election Commission. The political blog Daily Kos did an analysis of the fundraising figures and found Democratic challenger Bill Foster outraised Republican incumbent Judy Biggert in the third quarter. Foster raised $642,000 to Biggert's $624,000.[31]


Ideology and leadership

See also: GovTrack's Political Spectrum & Legislative Leadership ranking

Based on an analysis of bill sponsorship by GovTrack, Foster is a "rank-and-file Democrat," as of June 17, 2013.[32]

Like-minded colleagues

The website OpenCongress tracks the voting records of each member to determine with whom he or she votes most and least often. The results include a member from each party.[33]

Foster most often votes with:

Foster least often votes with:

National Journal vote ratings

See also: National Journal vote ratings


Each year National Journal publishes an analysis of how liberally or conservatively each member of Congress voted in the previous year. Information on 2012 vote rating is unavailable.

Lifetime missed votes

See also: Lifetime voting records of United States Senators and Representatives

According to the website GovTrack, Foster missed 17 of 2,319 roll call votes from Mar 2008 to Mar 2013. This amounts to 0.7%, which is better than the median of 2.2% among current congressional representatives as of March 2013.[34]

Net worth

See also: Net Worth of United States Senators and Representatives


Based on congressional financial disclosure forms and calculations made available by OpenSecrets.org, Foster's net worth as of 2011 was estimated between $6,766,022 and $29,016,000. That averages to $17,891,011, which is higher than the average net worth of Democratic representatives in 2011 of $5,107,874. His average net worth decreased by 1.68% from 2010.[35]

Voting with party


Bill Foster voted with the Democratic Party 89.1% of the time, which ranked 174th among the 201 House Democratic members as of June 2013.[36]


Foster lives in Naperville, Illinois with his wife Aesook, who is also a physicist. Foster has two grown children, Billy and Christine. [37]

Recent news

This section displays the most recent stories in a Google news search for the term Bill + Foster + Illinois + House

All stories may not be relevant to this page due to the nature of the search engine.

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External links

Suggest a link


  1. The New York Times, "Election brings seasoned politicians to congress," December 8, 2012
  2. The Washington Post, "Political comeback kids to take seats again in the House," November 18, 2012
  3. National Journal, "Illinois, 11th House District," November 6, 2012
  4. CQ.com, "House Committee Rosters for the 113th Congress"
  5. Bill Foster for Congress "Issues" Accessed December 30, 2011
  6. http://clerk.house.gov/evs/2008/roll681.xml
  7. Gallup "Among Recent Bills, Financial Reform a Lone Plus for Congress," September 13, 2010
  8. US House Clerk "Roll Call 690" December 10, 2008
  9. Gallup "Among Recent Bills, Financial Reform a Lone Plus for Congress," September 13, 2010
  10. US House Clerk "Roll Call 46," January 28, 2009
  11. Rasmussen "38% Say Stimulus Plan Helped Economy, 36% Say It Hurt," August 24, 2010
  12. US House Clerk "Roll Call 314," June 9, 2009
  13. Rasmussen "54% Oppose “Cash for Clunkers” Plan To Spur Purchase of Greener Cars," June 23, 2009
  14. US House Clerk "Roll Call 165," March 21, 2010
  15. Rasmussen "61% Favor Repeal of Health Care Law," September 20, 2010
  16. Congressional Record, "Resume of Congressional Activity, First Session of the 112th Congress," accessed September 5, 2013
  17. Congressional Record, "Resume of Congressional Activity, Second Session of the 113th Congress," accessed March 4, 2014
  18. Politico "2012 Election Map, Illinois"
  19. Chicago Sun-Times "Illinois Congress 2012: Bill Foster running in new 11th district UPDATE GOP react" Accessed December 5, 2011
  20. 20.0 20.1 ABC News 7 "Election Results Primary 2012" Accessed March 20, 2012
  21. Chicago Tribune, "Suburban congressional candidates square off in debate," October 13, 2012
  22. U.S. Congress House Clerk, "Statistics of the Congressional Election of November 2, 2010," accessed March 28, 2013
  23. U.S. Congress House Clerk, "Statistics of the Congressional Election of November 4, 2008," accessed March 28, 2013
  24. Open Secrets "Bill Foster" Accessed April 5, 2013
  25. Federal Election Commission "Bill Foster 2014 Summary reports," Accessed July 24, 2013
  26. Federal Election Commission "April Quarterly" Accessed July 24, 2013
  27. Federal Election Commission "July Quarterly" Accessed July 24, 2013
  28. Open Secrets "Bill Foster 2012 Election Cycle," Accessed February 22, 2013
  29. Open Secrets, "Election 2012: The Big Picture Shows Record Cost of Winning a Seat in Congress," June 19, 2013
  30. Chicago Business "Money pouring into area congressional races" Accessed July 13, 2012
  31. Daily Kos "Third quarter House fundraising: who's got the cash?" October 18, 2012
  32. Gov Track "Bill Foster" Accessed June 17, 2013
  33. OpenCongress, "Rep. Bill Foster," Accessed August 1, 2013
  34. GovTrack, "Bill Foster," Accessed April 1, 2013
  35. http://www.opensecrets.org/pfds/CIDsummary.php?CID=N00029139&year=2011 OpenSecrets.org, "Foster (D-Ill), 2011"]
  36. OpenCongress, "Voting With Party," accessed July 2014
  37. Bill Foster for Congress "About" Accessed December 30, 2011