Republican U.S. Senate candidate Jim Oberweis says he’s courting black voters in a way that other Republicans haven’t in decades. He has the endorsement of some ministers in Chicago, he opened a storefront office in a black neighborhood, and he has participated in a neighborhood watch with some of the preachers who have endorsed him, meeting and greeting voters, handing out literature and ice cream, and he says he is well received.
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He says the people there are like people anywhere else: They want jobs! “When it comes to jobs, who has more experience understanding that, (Sen.) Dick Durbin or Jim Oberweis? Easy battle. Dick Durbin has never created a private-sector job in his entire life,” Oberweis said.
But Durbin says jobs with Oberweis are for low pay, that he wants to keep low. “I wonder if he’s appeared before some of these churches where the ministers have publicly endorsed him and explained that he, Jim Oberweis, opposes raising the minimum wage for anyone under the age of 26. There are a lot of people in those pews that are struggling to get by. I don’t know that about Oberweis,” Durbin said.
A poll from the Paul Simon Public Policy Institute at Southern Illinois University has Durbin leading Oberweis 75-6 among black voters.