Who Should Represent the 13th District?

by Diane Benjamin

First, I must express my outrage again over Tim Johnson’s sudden decision to not run in November AFTER winning the March 20th primary.  He obviously tried to determine his successor instead of leaving his seat in the hands of the people, sorry Tim, but it belongs to us.

Last night a forum was held in Bloomington with 3 of the 4 candidates who want to replace him.  Jerry Clarke was unable to attend  because he was on army reserve duty.  Ed Brady read an unimpressive letter from Jerry where he blamed Obama for the debt.  I do too, but Republicans are big spenders too, he didn’t say he would cut anything.  For me, Jerry was never under consideration for 2 reasons:  He is a GOP State Central committeeman who hasn’t lived in his district for years and he refused to quit so his district had representation.  Also, he had a website ready to go for this run in February, long before Johnson announced he was quitting.  Two strikes, in my mind he is out before the third.

Rodney Davis seems like a nice enough guy, but he also came off as a politician.  He often joked, sometimes at inappropriate times.  When asked about foreign policy, he mentioned Latin and South America and specifically Venezuela.  The policy was incoherent – keep buying their oil so we have influence on them.  Just in the news this week was a report that Iran is sending them missiles capable of reaching the United States.  That wasn’t addressed.  Rodney also mentioned repealing Obamacare, but he thinks the federal government should dictate rules about not allowing insurance companies to deny coverage for preexisting conditions.  The other 2 candidates considered it a state issue.

Erika Herald impressed me as a person, but she had 2 big red flags.  She wants ethanol use in gasoline raised to 15% from the current 10%.  Just this week, it was reported that a 15% blend causes engine damage because most vehicles aren’t made to burn a blend that high.  Also, ethanol is subsidized.  Since it’s use has increased, the price of corn has skyrocketed, farmland prices have skyrocketed, and so have food prices.  Until ethanol can be made cheaply, and with something other than food, ethanol is a hidden tax on the American people.  The only way it can support itself is if gas prices remain high.  The current gas prices are crushing our economy!  Farmers won’t approve, but I’m 100% against corn ethanol.

Erika also mentioned public-private partnerships as something that is needed.  If we could trust government to make wise decisions unaffected by politics, these types of arrangements could benefit society.  We know how likely that is .   In a free market society, government has no place promoting or subsidizing anything in the private sector.  Government can not be allowed to select winners and losers because they are very bad at it.  Look at Solyndra and the other green energy investments made by the Department of Energy.   The government takeover of General Motors could be considered a public-private partnership.  Stock holders lost, pensions holders lost, taxpayers have NOT been repaid, and unions won big.  The case for LIMITED government could not be clearer.

The appointment of Erika could be appealing because of her background and ethnicity, but her policies and her view of the federal government is troubling to constitutional conservatives.  Also, does Congress need another lawyer?  She came across as someone wanting a career in politics.  Career politicians are a problem for most Americans.

Kathy Wassink was a surprise.  I have heard she is very respected on conservative circles, but otherwise I knew little about her.   She worked on the campaigns of Sam McCann and Bobby Shilling.  Both campaigns were successful and both upset prominent Democrats.  The Democratic opponent, Dr David Gill, uses all the talking points of a Democratic candidate-War on Women, Wall Street influence, etc.  A very clear line needs to be drawn and Kathy is the one candidate who understands the role of the Federal Government with respect to states rights and she can intelligently discuss the issues and differences.  I’ve heard comments about Kathy being unable to compromise and work with others in Congress.  What has compromise gotten us?  Almost $16 Trillion in debt!  Has the Senate compromised?  They haven’t even discussed a budget in over 1100 days.  We must force the Democrats to compromise with conservatives, in the past it’s been the opposite.  Kathy is very capable of expressing  conservative values and swaying people with the ideals most Americans believe in.  She is a small business owner, a mother, and a political activist.

Kathy stated that she has a concealed carry permit.  I’ve heard some comments that she meant to say a FOID card.  I would bet she spoke correctly.  Many people in Illinois have concealed carry permits in OTHER states.  Just because Illinois won’t allow it yet, doesn’t mean other states won’t issue it.  She should have clarified the point.

Kathy would also come with an army of grass root supporters, the same people who got Bobby Shilling and Sam McCann elected.  These 2 races show that money doesn’t matter when the people believe in you.  Kathy is the candidate who would have people working hard to get her elected.  The other 3 would not inspire door knockers, contributions, letters to the editor, and open discussion of the issues.

The establishment GOP won’t agree.  Winning an election is all that matters, not the character or policies of the candidate.  Conservatives win elections.  The House of Representatives is also called “The People’s House”.  The people will want Kathy Wassink because she is one of us, not a political insider or just another lawyer.

5 thoughts on “Who Should Represent the 13th District?

  1. Really good round up here, Diane. Totally agree with you on the ethanol issue. I now think Gill actually has a shot at this race, thanks to the DUH of Tim Johnson. Sounds to me like Kathy would have been a better pick than Davis. Was really disappointed to read in Daily Paragraph the quote that Parrott voted for Davis because he was a great fundraiser? Seriously? How stupid do the major Party leaders think voters are?

  2. Yes Diane, you are correct. My concealed carry permit is issued out of the state of Florida. I do have my state mandated FOID card. I assumed 2nd Amendment advocates would have recognized that. Thank you for your article, you are one of the few who gets it.
    Kathy Wassink

    1. Worse than “get it” Kathy. I live it full time! Conservatives all over Illinois have the Republican Party funding their Democratic opponents in November. Full out WAR!

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