In an attempt to bolster Congressman Phil Hare (D-Rock Island) against Republican challenger Bobby Schilling in the Nov. 2 election, Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) made his way to the Galesburg Labor Temple during a tour of the 17th Congressional Saturday.
After an introduction by Galesburg Mayor Salvador Garza, Durbin took the opportunity to speak to his feelings on the Tea Party.
“The Tea Party can have the Republican Party,” Durbin said, “but they won’t take this town, this state, or this country.”
He remained firmly behind his party, putting in a plug for other Democratic campaigns across the state.
This includes Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan, Secretary of State Jesse White and his potential colleague and current Treasurer Alexi Giannoulias, who is up against North Shore Congressman Mark Kirk for President Barack Obama’s former Senate seat.
“We need to take America forward,” Durbin said, referencing President Clinton’s budget surplus and the manner in which the national debt increased from $5 trillion to $12 trillion during President Bush’s terms in office. “We don’t need to apologize for being Democrats … We will win the elections for the right reasons with the right people.”
Much of Durbin’s support for Hare manifested itself in his description of ad campaigns against Hare, in particular ads funded by American Crossroads, a conservative group of which Karl Rove is a member.
“Karl Rove crawls on his belly like a reptile,” Durbin said.
As Hare took the stage, he primarily addressed taxation, explaining that Schilling wants to give $100,000 to the richest two percent of the population.
“Bobby, you’re for the fat cats, and I’m for the skinny cats,” Hare said.
Hare also expressed his support for education investment by means of hiring teachers and keeping class sizes down and for universal health care, which he called “fundamental.” He denounced the opposition, adding that he does not “want to kill grandma.”