Dick Durbin is an American politician, who is currently serving as the senior United States senator from Illinois. He has been winning this seat since 1997, which shows his strong connect with people in the state. Dick Durbin is a member of the Democratic Party. He has held key positions such as Senate Democratic whip since 2005. This is the second highest ranked position in the Democratic leadership in the Senate. Durbin has also been working as the Senate majority whip since 2021 and heads the Senate Judiciary Committee.
In the 1996 United States Senate election in Illinois, Dick Durbin defeated his nearest rival Al Salvi of Republican Party by a comfortable margin of more than 650,000 votes. While Durbin received 56.09% of the votes, Al Salvi received 40.67%. In the next election in 2002, Durbin again emerged winner with an even larger share in votes. His vote share was 2,103,766 or more than 60%, which was a significant achievement. His nearest rival Jim Durkin of Republican Party received 1,325,703 votes or 38.02% of the total votes cast.
In 2008 United States Senate election in Illinois, Dick Durbin improved his tally further with an astounding 3,615,844 votes or more than 2/3rd of the total votes cast. His nearest rival Steve Sauerberg of Republican Party received 1,520,621 votes or 28.53% of the total votes cast.
The 2014 United States Senate election in Illinois was not so easy for Dick Durbin, as vote share plummeted to 1,929,637 or 53.55%. His nearest rival Jim Oberweis of Republican Party polled 1,538,522 votes or 42.69%. In 2020 United States Senate election in Illinois, Dick Durbin made some gains over the previous election by increasing vote share to 54.93% or 3,278,930 votes. His nearest rival Mark Curran of Republican Party received 2,319,870 or 38.87% of the votes.
Early life, education and professional career
Dick Durbin was born on November 21, 1944 to Anna and William Durbin. He was born in East St. Louis, Illinois. He did his schooling at Assumption High School in East St. Louis. Later, he completed a bachelor’s degree from the School of Foreign Service at Georgetown University.
He got early exposure to political affairs while working as an intern in Senator Paul Douglas’s office. This was during his senior year in college. Durbin also completed his J.D. from Georgetown University Law Center and subsequently became a member of Illinois bar. He started his professional career by launching his own law practice in Springfield.
Dick Durbin aspirations for the senator began at an early age when he ran for the Illinois State Senate in 1976. But he was defeated. He finally tasted success in 1996 when he was chosen as the replacement for Senator Paul Simon. Dick Durbin is part of various important committed such as Committee on Appropriations and Committee on the Judiciary. He also holds various Caucus memberships. Dick Durbin has expressed his views on various topics such as abortion, China relations, criminal justice reforms, gun law and immigration policy.
Dick Durbin remains committed to the welfare of his people and country. He has interest in movies and has acted in TV movie ‘Pricele$$’ released in 2010 and The Gettysburg Address (2015).