Thursday, August 30, 2007
Personal Aside: The Lauzen-Oberweis Differences.
Earlier this week I suggested rhetorically that if there are no ideological differences between conservatives Jim Oberweis and Chris Lauzen in the 14th district, perhaps one or the other of them should vacate the lists rather than run the risk of a third candidate a liberal, pro-choice Republican, the mayor of Geneva winning the nomination.
A number of views came in, most of which are from Lauzen people and are revelatory. Of course as is expected someone named Lawrence responded by calling me namesbut Lawrence who salts his missives occasionally in capital letters is a pretty sick puppy. Anyhow, there have come in several items that list the differences between Oberweis and Lauzen which necessitate, a number of people said, a primary race. These observations come from a variety of sourcesnot directly from either candidate but these I present now reflect the views, pretty generally, of Lauzen supporters. So here goes. If you favor Lauzen or Oberweis, give me your views which I will record here (I am sure Lawrence will; having called me a traitor to my country and now pig he will have to think up others if his keeper allows him a sharp instrument like a pencil or pen with which to write).
From the first batch I received over the past days:
First difference: Lauzen has been doing for 15 years what Oberweis has promised in three campaigns.
Second: Lauzen wins elections; Jim loses them. Lauzen has an 11 to 1 record since March, 1992the only loss coming in November, 1998 for comptroller. However in that race he won each of the five largest counties in the 14th: DeKalb, DuPage, Kane, Kendall and Lee over Dan Hynes.
Third, Oberweis ran: for the U. S. Senate in the GOP primary and lost in March, 2002; ran for the U. S. Senate again in 2004s primary and lost. Then he tried for the Republican governors nomination in 2006 and lost. He sp;ent an average of $2.5 million per primary. He lost campaigns for: State Republican chairman; Kane county Republican chairman and 14th district GOP state central committeeman.
Fourth, Lauzen debates with statistics in a temperate manner; Oberweis with a blunderbuss. In a state Senate debate, Lauzen was the only member of the 59-member body to speak and vote against providing 2/3rds tuition discounts to illegal immigrants (thus taking admission slots away from legal citizens at Illinois public universities). Oberweis approach was to fly a helicopter over Soldier field and misquote statistics. While in the state Senate a subsequent vote was won by a single vote because the political line had been drawn in Lauzens first debate, Oberweis had become an easier target to caricaturize and damage which would be easy prey for a Rahm Emanuel-type campaign in the general.
Fifth, while Lauzen has been unambiguously pro-life, Oberweis has been quoted as saying that pro-life people demonstrated an intolerance and zealotgry comparable to the Taliban. He is still trying to clarify where he stands on a number of issues and the Taliban issue comes up all the time.
Sixth, Lauzen sponsored the successful Truth in Budgeting and Truth in Pensions bills to bolster his reputation as a fiscal conservative, Oberweis reiterates campaign promises.
Seventh, the fact that Oberweis has spent $7.5 million of his own money in three earlier runs and thus far $5 million in this, a question must be raised whether he is in sync with voters who have to get the mortgage paid, pay for college, not being wiped out by a medical emergency
Eighth, 88% of the people in Kaneville, Ill. and 80% in Big Rock have voted in the referendum against the Prairie Parkway or Sprawlway or Outer Belt aka Hastert Highway. Whether well-founded or not, there is a widespread, serious resentment about the perception that he may have profited $2 million directly or indirectly from transportation decisions made in Washington, D. C. Dick Morris, in his recent book Outrage, used one of Hasterts two sons who worked as lobbyists as examples of whats wrong with our system of self-governance.
Ninth, now that the centerline has been established by IDOT for the future transportation corridor, the current decision is how do we best spend the $207 million earmark that we are grateful Hastert secured for the north-south connector between Routes 88 and 80? A great majority support the Route 47 Plus Plan which reliecves immediate traffic congestion and for now protects many environmental concerns rather than building a 5-mile stretch of the Prairie Parkway between Routes 34 and 71 which could most likely benefit land speculators rather than relieve traffic. Since Jim Oberweis has said he supports the Hastert legacy, he will frustrate his neighbors immediate traffic concerns about Rt. 47 and the surrounding network of north-south roads in Kane and Kendall, starting with widening Rt. 47 through downtown Yorkville. Lauzen is in favor of the 47 Plus Plan.
Tenth, Lauzen stood up to the big drug companies and their huge profits by allowing consumers to purchase drugs through safe Canadian suppliers while it was a legal process. A program that his volunteers started at no cost to taxpayers saved customers an average of 50% on their prescription bills. The question is what is the Oberweis position of helping people on this issue.
Oberweis people are invited to contribute to this further discussion. We might as well understand that there will be a primary and the debate could well be conducted right here.