The Journal & Topics Newspapers endorses John Tree in the 10th Congressional Dist. Democratic primary and enthusiastically recommends incumbent Democrat Jan Schakowsky in the 9th Dist. Congressional race.
In the only other significant primary contest affecting local 9th and 10th Dist. voters---for Cook County Board of Review---the Journal makes no endorsement. This bitter Republican battle between incumbent Dan Patlak and challenger Sean Morrison has turned ugly with charges of lying and electioneering.
The Tuesday, Mar. 20 ballot contains few choices for voters featuring only a couple of significant races. That is disappointing given the critical issues facing local, state and federal government.
The Democratic 10th Dist. Congressional race is quite contested with four candidates looking to unseat freshman Republican U.S. Rep. Robert Dold in the November election.
In the contest to see who can raise the most money, 10th Dist. hopefuls Brad Schneider and Ilya Sheyman are fighting for supremacy. In our view, however, fundraising is not the main factor to consider when choosing who will best represent the 10th in Congress.
A person’s personal history, breadth of experience, values and motivations for running should be taken into consideration.
As a full colonel with 22 years in the Air Force, work at the Pentagon and in the corporate world ranging from starting a small granola company with 20 employees to working for two Fortune 100 companies, candidate Tree brings unmatched diversity and much experience to the table.
Tree’s three years working as both a civilian and Air Force officer in Haiti make the issues of poverty personal and real to Tree. Those values are important in this economy.
Even though former MoveOn.org organizer and Barack Obama Senatorial staffer Ilya Sheyman brings a bit of experience, the 25-year-old’s qualifications do not match those of Tree’s.
Brad Schneider has business experience that is matched by Tree, but lacks other qualities.
The toxic environment between Schneider and Sheyman’s supporters is also concerning.
Sheyman can, without doubt, energize his political base, while Schneider will appeal to swing voters. A campaign contribution Schneider made in the past to then U.S. Rep. Mark Kirk (R-10th) has soured many on the far left. Tree, we feel, can appeal to a wider range of Democratic voters.
Candidate Vivek Bavda told the Journal recently that he would make small proposals in Congress because larger ones would likely be too difficult to pass in the partisan environment of the current Congress.
In the 9th Congressional Dist. that now contains much of eastern Glenview, the Journal is enthusiastic in its endorsement of Schakowsky.
Her opponent, Simon Ribeiro, has little experience by comparison and has never held public office. His policy ideas are good but do not differ significantly from Schakowsky’s. Electability and influence in Washington are important. Schakowsky is a national leader among Democrats who has represented the 9th well for a long time.