In Illinois’ half-dozen hotly contested races for Congress, a teachers’ union is endorsing a couple of Republicans. U.S. Reps. Judy Biggert (R-Hinsdale) and Robert Dold (R-Kenilworth) get the nod of the Illinois Education Association, whose vice president, Kathi Griffin, says the teachers’ union makes friends where it can find them.
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“I think it’s important that we focus on what the candidate stands for, and that’s what we have done in Illinois for many, many years. It isn’t whether you are a Democrat or Republican, it’s whether you are a friend of education, and will do what is best to facilitate the learning and instruction of our students,” she said.
Biggert is running in the 11th Congressional District in the Naperville area vs. former Democratic Rep. Bill Foster. Dold is running in the 10th District in the Waukegan area vs. Democrat Brad Schneider. The union announced the endorsements Monday at Hinsdale South High School in Darien, where Biggert was once president of the Board of Education. Specifically, the IEA is pleased that Biggert was one of the few Republican votes against federal private-school vouchers.
The union endorsed two Democrats running against incumbent Republicans: Cheri Bustos vs. Rep. Bobby Schilling (R-Colona) in the 17th District in Western Illinois and Tammy Duckworth vs. Rep. Joe Walsh (R-McHenry) in the Eighth District in the Schaumburg Area. The IEA also endorsed two Democrats in open-seat races, Bill Enyart, running against Republican Jason Plummer in the 12th District in Southern Illinois, and Dr. David Gill, running against Republican Rodney Davis in the 13th District in Central Illinois.