17th District Congresswoman Cheri Bustos

Cong. Bustos: Why Tie Immigration To The Budget

Jan 29, 2018

Congress passed yet another short-term spending bill a week ago but only after a three-day government shutdown. The bill funds the federal government through February 8th.


That leaves lawmakers just 11 days to develop a spending plan for the fiscal year that began last October. Immigration issues, including the status of DACA children, are at the core of the impasse.

Denise Molina / Peoria Public Radio

For years, Illinois Congressman Rodney Davis has been trying to get legislation passed to give local governments in rural Illinois a better shot at disaster aid from the Federal Emergency Management Agency, or FEMA. Now, the Taylorville Republican says he may finally have his chance.

Republican Gov. Bruce Rauner sent two clear signals when he dumped $50 million into his campaign fund: The 2018 race for Illinois governor will be a rough one, and the contest starts now.

What's still unknown is which Democrats will try to unseat the multimillionaire former businessman. According to potential candidates and aides, those considering a bid include U.S. Rep. Cheri Bustos, businessman Chris Kennedy, state Sen. Andy Manar and billionaire investor J.B. Pritzker. Kennedy could make an announcement next month. The others haven't set a timeline.

Helping Black Owned Businesses in Peoria

Oct 5, 2016
Tanya Koonce / Peoria Public Radio

17th District Congresswoman Cheri Bustos visited the Minority Business Development Center in Peoria Tuesday.

Much of the space at the Black Business Alliance office at 2139 SW Adams is still under reconstruction. But it’s already working to help more minority owned businesses grow and succeed.

1st District Peoria City Council Woman Denise Moore is championing the effort to link perspective businesses owners to a variety of organizations like the Small Business Administration.

Tanya Koonce / Peoria Public Radio

17th District Congresswoman Cheri Bustos is traveling throughout her 14-county district this month, on what she’s calling the “21st Century Heartland Tour."

Bustos kicked off the tour yesterday in Fairview and Peoria. At the Fairview Livestock Sale Barn, Bustos met 9-year-old Addison Fidler. Fidler had just sold her pig for $9,000 and donated it St Jude.

Bustos also visited the U of I College of Medicine to learn about the school’s rural health care program. She says that program aims to get more doctors into smaller communities:   

The Peoria International Airport is receiving more than $1.7 million for the rehabilitation of the airport’s apron. Illinois Senator Dick Durbin and Representative Cheri Bustos jointly announced the funding. The U.S. Department of Transportation awarded the grant to help with concrete replacements from gates five down to Byerly Aviation. The  announcement builds on more than $1.6 million in federal funding provided last year.

Trump May Mean Democratic Infusion

Jun 13, 2016
Gage Skidmore

Donald Trump’s rise to presumptive Republican presidential nominee seemingly has an unintended side effect on the Democratic Party. It’s motivating more Democrats to run for public office.

Fuller Center helps veterans with home repairs

Mar 10, 2016
Tanya Koonce / Peoria Public Radio

  The three year-old Fuller Center in Peoria showcased some of its work for Congresswoman Cheri Bustos Thursday. The nonprofit, all-volunteer organization helps veterans with home repairs that are out of reach.


Congresswoman Bustos visited the home of a Korean War Veteran named Charles. He has a new ramp to his back door, and accessible bathroom retro fittings. She says the Fuller Center program is doing great things for people like Charles who’s made huge sacrifices for the country.

One of the key races for Illinois Republicans in the March 15th primary will be for Congress in the 17th District. Illinois Public Radio's Herb Trix reports. 

Democrat Cheri Bustos from East Moline was first elected in 2012, when she defeated one term republican, and Tea Party member, Bobby Schilling. Two years later, in a rematch, she defeated Schilling again. Both republicans say they originally got in the race when they worried no one else would oppose her. Jack Baccarossa from Milan is retired after working at the Rock Island Arsenal as a mechanical engineer, while Patrick Harlan who lives in Galesburg is still working, as a truck driver.

 Baccarossa has volunteered for various republican candidates in the Quad Cities area, and once served on a school board. And not surprisingly, he wants to protect the Rock Island Arsenal, and its thousands of jobs. He also thinks the former Savanna Army Depot could be put to better use - thousands of currently un-used acres could host an ethanol plant, or even a nuclear power plant.  Harlan joined the Knox County Tea Party in 2013, and is now its president. Now delivering fuel for Casey’s General Stores in Illinois, he calls himself “a typical blue collar working class man.” In the past, he belonged to two national labor unions while working for two major employers in Galesburg. And on his website, Harlan says “I have lost my home during hard times and I lost all hope that things will get better. I am tired of politics keeping good hard working families down.”

A western Illinois library is expanding its collection thanks to the Library of Congress. U.S. Rep. Cheri Bustos on Tuesday brought two boxes of books to the Salem Township Public Library in Yates City. Bustos says the Library of Congress gives books to lawmakers when the library's shelves start getting too full. Members of Congress then donate them to schools, public libraries and non-profit agencies.  Bustos says she's tried to direct the books to rural libraries that have fewer resources.


Hundreds of bridges are structurally deficient or obsolete in Central Illinois. To that end, Representative Cheri Bustos says Congress needs to pass a long-term transportation bill. Marty Helfers is the Executive Director of the West Central Illinois Building Trades. He says long-term funding means more stability for local jobs:

U.S. Rep. Cheri Bustos says she's decided not to challenge Republican Mark Kirk for his U.S. Senate seat.

Bustos discusses funding DHS, veterans issues

Feb 23, 2015

Democrat Cheri Bustos says Congressional leaders need to stop playing political games with the country’s national security. The 17th District Congresswoman says the House and Senate are running up against a Friday deadline to fund the U.S. Department of Homeland Security.

Bustos to honor veterans advocate at State of the Union

Jan 19, 2015

A man who helps fellow veterans in the Quad Cities will be in Washington tonight for the President's State of Union Address. Mike Malmstrom will be the guest of Illinois 17th District Congresswoman, Cheri Bustos.

Malmstrom served in the Marines during the Vietnam War, and in recent years has organized the annual Quad Cities Stand Down - a weekend in the fall when homeless veterans can meet with federal and state agencies including the V-A, get meals, medical care, winter clothing, and a place to sleep for a couple of nights. 

17th District Congresswoman Cheri Bustos says President Barack Obama’s announcement to normalize relations with Cuba could benefit Illinois. The president’s announcement includes re-establishing economic ties with the country.

Central Illinois will have a voice in choosing public safety officers for a prestigious national award.

Former Congressman Lane Evans dies

Nov 6, 2014

A long-time former 17th District Congressman has died after a long fight with Parkinson’s disease. 63-year old Lane Evans died Wednesday at a nursing home in East Moline, according to his legal guardian.

Denise Molina-Weiger / Peoria Public Radio

17th District Congresswoman Cheri Bustos is celebrating the 20th anniversary of the Violence Against Women Act by touring domestic violence centers in the area.

Denise Molina-Weiger / Peoria Public Radio

The Republican looking to unseat 17th District Congresswoman Cheri Bustos says the Democrat is unwilling to participate in more than one debate.

Congresswoman Cheri Bustos is co-sponsoring legislation that aims to make the university experience safer. The 17th District Congresswoman is one of about 20 representatives introducing the House version of the Campus Safety and Accountability act. 

Bustos tours VA clinic

Jul 1, 2014
Tamie Yost


Congresswoman Cheri Bustos toured the Bob Michel VA Clinic Tuesday meeting with administrators, and talking to veterans. 

MLK Day march in Peoria ends with Ceremony

Jan 20, 2014

  The Annual Martin Luther King Freedom March followed the luncheon. 

Associated Press

Federal officials remain committed to opening a vacant prison in northwest Illinois. But securing funding remains a key roadblock in getting the facility in Thomson up and running.