Eric Sorensen
Sorensen House Photo.jpg
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Illinois's 17th district
Assumed office
January 3, 2023
Preceded byCheri Bustos
Personal details
Born (1976-03-18) March 18, 1976 (age 47)
Rockford, Illinois, U.S.
Political partyDemocratic
EducationNorthern Illinois University (BS)
WebsiteHouse website

Eric Sorensen (born March 18, 1976) is an American meteorologist and politician serving as the U.S. representative from Illinois's 17th congressional district since 2023. A member of the Democratic Party, Sorensen is the first openly gay member of Congress from Illinois.[1]

Early life and career

Born in Rockford, Illinois, Sorensen graduated from Boylan Catholic High School.[2] He studied communications and meteorology at Northern Illinois University.[3]

Sorensen began his career as a meteorologist at KTRE, the ABC affiliate in Lufkin, Texas, from 1999 to 2000 before moving to Tyler, Texas, where he was the morning meteorologist for East Texas News Daybreak, which aired on both KLTV and KTRE-TV. He worked as chief meteorologist for WREX, Rockford's NBC affiliate, from 2003 to 2014, before becoming the senior meteorologist for WQAD, the ABC affiliate of Moline, Illinois. Sorensen became a fellow of the Society for Environmental Journalists in 2018.[4] He retired from television in 2021.[2][5] Sorensen took a job in communications for UnityPoint Health before announcing his run for Congress.[2]

U.S. House of Representatives

2022 election

See also: 2022 United States House of Representatives elections in Illinois § District 17

With Cheri Bustos not seeking reelection, Sorensen declared his candidacy for the United States House of Representatives for Illinois's 17th congressional district in the 2022 elections on November 10, 2021, as a member of the Democratic Party.[5] He defeated Esther Joy King, the Republican nominee, in the November 8, 2022, general election.[6]


COVID-19 policy

On January 31, 2023, Sorensen voted against H.R.497:Freedom for Health Care Workers Act, a bill that would lift COVID-19 vaccine mandates for healthcare workers.[7][8]

On February 1, 2023, Sorensen voted against a resolution to end the COVID-19 national emergency.[9][10]


In 2023, Sorensen voted against H.Con.Res. 21, which directed President Joe Biden to remove U.S. troops from Syria within 180 days.[11][12]

Caucus memberships

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Committee assignments

Electoral history


Illinois 17th Congressional District Democratic Primary, 2022
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic Eric Sorensen 14,702 37.7
Democratic Litesa Wallace 9,103 23.3
Democratic Jonathan Logemann 5,628 14.4
Democratic Angie Normoyle 4,818 12.4
Democratic Marsha Williams 2,701 6.9
Democratic Jacqueline McGowan 2,040 5.2
Write-in 14 0.0
Total votes 39,006 100.0
Illinois 17th Congressional District General Election, 2022[13]
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic Eric Sorensen 121,186 52.0
Republican Esther Joy King 111,931 48.0
Write-in 6 0.0
Total votes 233,123 100.0

Personal life

Sorensen is the first LGBTQ person to be elected to Congress from Illinois.[1] He lives with his partner in Moline.[1]


  1. ^ a b c "Illinois Elects First Gay Congressman, Eric Sorensen". November 9, 2022.
  2. ^ a b c "Eric Sorensen, former Rockford TV meteorologist, to run for Congress". November 10, 2021. Retrieved November 10, 2022.
  3. ^ Kinnicutt, Grace. "Meet the Illinois-17th District candidates: Eric Sorensen and Esther Joy King". The Quad-City Times. Retrieved November 10, 2022.
  4. ^ "The Flood Watcher".
  5. ^ a b "Former Rockford meteorologist Eric Sorensen announces run for Illinois' 17th Congressional District". November 10, 2021. Retrieved November 10, 2022.
  6. ^ "King concedes Illinois 17th Congressional District race to Sorensen". Retrieved November 10, 2022.
  7. ^ "Seven Democrats join Republicans in vote to lift vaccine mandate for healthcare workers". January 31, 2023.
  8. ^ "On Passage - H.R.497: To eliminate the COVID-19 vaccine mandate on". August 12, 2015.
  9. ^ "House passes resolution to end COVID-19 national emergency". February 2023.
  10. ^ "On Passage - H.J.RES.7: Relating to a national emergency declared by". August 12, 2015.
  11. ^ "H.Con.Res. 21: Directing the President, pursuant to section 5(c) of … -- House Vote #136 -- Mar 8, 2023". March 8, 2023.
  12. ^ "House Votes Down Bill Directing Removal of Troops From Syria". Associated Press. March 8, 2023.
  13. ^ "2022 General Election Results".