Illinois’ 16th Congressional District election, 2022

Congressman Adam Kinzinger has represented Illinois’ 16th Congressional District since 2013. The moderate Republican has broken with his party at times, most notably in voting to impeach former President Donald Trump after the January 6th Capitol riot. As Kinzinger heads into a contentious 2022 re-election bid, he faces several primary challengers eager to paint him as disloyal to the GOP. So who is running against Adam Kinzinger next year?

Republican Primary Challengers

who is running against adam kinzinger in 2022

Kinzinger faces three main competitors in the Republican primary on June 28, 2022.

Catalina Lauf

The most prominent challenger is Catalina Lauf, a former Trump administration advisor. Lauf first gained notice by running against Kinzinger in the 2020 primary before dropping out. The young challenger describes herself as a “constitutional conservative” and aligns closely with Trump’s “America First” policies.

Some of Lauf’s key positions include:

  • Building a wall along the southern border
  • Opposing COVID-19 mandates
  • Protecting gun rights

Lauf has proven an adept fundraiser, bringing in over $700,000 as of the latest filings. She claims Kinzinger is out of touch with local Republicans in the district.

James Marter

James Marter is a former Kendall County Board member who also ran unsuccessfully against Kinzinger in the 2018 primary. The staunch conservative aims to paint the incumbent as a RINO (Republican In Name Only) who consistently sides with Democrats.

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Marter supports:

  • Aggressive border security measures
  • Banning abortion
  • Cutting entitlement programs

However, Marter has lagged in fundraising, bringing in only about $50,000 to date. He hopes his grassroots support can overcome Kinzinger’s financial advantage.

Teddy Roberts

A wildcard in the primary is Air Force veteran Teddy Roberts. He has criticized Kinzinger as a career politician who lost touch with voters.

Some of Roberts’ positions include:

  • Tougher policies toward China
  • Support for law enforcement
  • Protecting American industries

However, Roberts only entered the race recently and has not reported any fundraising yet. He faces an uphill climb to unseat Kinzinger.

Democratic Primary Candidates

While several Republicans hope to take down Kinzinger, there has been little momentum on the Democratic side. No major Democratic candidates stepped forward before the filing deadline. A few third party and independent challengers joined the race, but none are seen as serious threats.

Factors in the Race

Several key factors will determine the outcome of Kinzinger’s re-election bid.

  • Redistricting – The reshaped 16th District will likely be even more Republican-leaning, making Kinzinger’s path easier despite his Trump opposition.
  • Kinzinger vs. Trump – The Congressman’s outspoken criticism of the former President will be a major focus of attack ads from primary challengers.
  • Fundraising – Kinzinger holds a massive advantage, with $5.4 million cash on hand as of the latest reports. No GOP challenger has topped $1 million raised.


Barring a massive upset, Congressman Adam Kinzinger is well-positioned to fend off his Republican rivals and win renomination. Divisions among the anti-Kinzinger candidates give the incumbent an advantage. While the primary will be competitive, Kinzinger’s seat in Congress seems secure for now. The bigger question is whether his public opposition to Trump will allow him to survive future elections as the Republican Party determines its direction.

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Who are the main Republicans challenging Adam Kinzinger in 2022?

The three main primary challengers are Catalina Lauf, James Marter, and Teddy Roberts. Lauf is seen as the strongest opponent.

What are the main criticisms of Kinzinger among GOP rivals?

They portray Kinzinger as disloyal to the party for voting to impeach Trump and rejecting conservative stances. They also call him a career politician who lost touch with the district.

How has redistricting impacted Kinzinger’s re-election prospects?

Redistricting has likely made the 16th District more Republican, giving Kinzinger an advantage despite facing primary challengers.

How big is Kinzinger’s fundraising lead over GOP rivals?

Kinzinger has raised over $5 million, dwarfing all Republican challengers who have struggled to top $1 million in fundraising.

Who are the Democratic candidates running against Kinzinger?

No major Democratic candidate entered the race to challenge Kinzinger in the general election.

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