The fiscally conservative Club for Growth will "enthusiastically support" Tea Party favorite Rep. Joe Walsh (R-Ill.) in his reelection bid, they announced Wednesday morning.
"In less than a year, Congressman Walsh has distinguished himself as a pro-growth leader," said Club for Growth President Chris Chocola. "We have no doubt that Congressman Walsh will continue to be a fighter for free markets and economic growth in Congress."
Walsh, who won by just 290 votes in 2010 in a suburban swing district, has emerged as a leading voice against raising the debt ceiling under any circumstances. A letter from the freshman member slamming Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.)'s plan to allow President Obama to raise the debt limit ended up with 86 co-signatories, and he has become a regular guest on the cable news networks.
Walsh's reelection prospects are better than many of his fellow Illinois Republicans. Democrats in the state passed a redistricting map that slices and dices Republican districts and could force the retirements of as many as six House Republicans, but while Walsh's old district is greatly altered, he still has a path to victory. Walsh plans to run in a new heavily Republican district in exurban Chicago near his home. He will likely face off in a primary against fellow freshman Republican Rep. Randy Hultgren.
The Club for Growth is a deep-pocketed group that could help Walsh outspend Hultgren by wide margins in a primary. The organization acknowledged the impact redistricting has on Walsh's reelection. "If the district lines in Illinois as passed by the Democrats end up
being upheld, then Club for Growth PAC will enthusiastically support
Congressman Walsh for re-election in the 14th Congressional District," said Chocola. Republicans have gone to court to try to strike down the map.