Dick Durbin is an American politician currently serving as a senior US Senator from Illinois. He has won this seat since 1997, showing his strong connection to the people of the state. Dick Durbin is a member of the Democratic Party. Since 2005, he has held key positions such as Democratic Senate leader. This is the second-highest position in the Senate Democratic leadership. Durbin has also served as Senate Majority Whip since 2021 and chairs the Senate Judiciary Committee.
In the 1996 US Senate election in Illinois, Dick Durbin defeated his closest rival Al Salvi of the Republican Party by a comfortable margin of more than 650,000 votes. While Durbin received 56.09% of the vote, Al Salvi received 40.67%. In the next elections in 2002, Durbin again emerged victorious with an even larger share of the vote. His share of the vote was 2,103,766, or more than 60%, which is quite an achievement. His closest rival, Jim Durkin of the Republican Party, received 1,325,703 votes, or 38.02% of the total votes cast.
In the 2008 US Senate election in Illinois, Dick Durbin improved his record with a staggering 3,615,844 votes, or more than 2/3 of the total votes cast. His closest rival, Steve Sauerberg of the Republican Party, received 1,520,621 votes, or 28.53% of all votes cast.
The 2014 US Senate election in Illinois was not so easy for Dick Durbin as the vote fell to 1,929,637 or 53.55%. His closest rival, Jim Oberweis of the Republican Party, received 1,538,522 votes, or 42.69%. In the 2020 US Senate election in Illinois, Dick Durbin made some gains over the previous election by raising the vote share to 54.93% or 3,278,930 votes. His closest rival, Mark Curran of the Republican Party, received 2,319,870 or 38.87% of the vote.
Early life, education and career
Dick Durbin was born on November 21, 1944 to Anna and William Durbin. He was born in East St Louis, Illinois. He attended Assumption High School in East St. Louis. He later earned a bachelor’s degree from Georgetown University’s School of Foreign Service.
He was exposed to political affairs at an early age while serving as an intern in Senator Paul Douglas’ office. This was during his senior year of college. Durbin also completed his JD at Georgetown University Law Center and subsequently became a member of the Illinois Bar. He began his professional career by opening his own law practice in Springfield.
Dick Durbin’s aspirations for Senator began at an early age when he was running for the Illinois State Senate in 1976. But he was defeated. He finally succeeded in 1996 when he was elected to succeed Senator Paul Simon. Dick Durbin is a member of several important bodies such as the Appropriations Committee and the Judiciary Committee. He also holds various caucus memberships. Dick Durbin has expressed his views on various issues such as abortion, relations with China, criminal justice reform, gun laws and immigration policy.
Dick Durbin remains committed to the welfare of his people and his country. He is interested in movies and has starred in the 2010 TV movie Pricele$$ and The Gettysburg Address (2015).