US Senate candidates prepare for elections

Debby Hernandez, Administration Editor

As election time approaches, the different candidates are ramping toward Election Day, including the nominations for state senator.

Running for this year’s election for senator include Jim Oberweis, R-IL Re, Dick Durbin D-IL, and Libertarian Sharon Hansen.

Representing the Republican Party candidate is Oberweis, an entrepreneur, businessman and member of the Illinois senate.

He is the Illinois Senator for the 25th district and the owner of Oberweis Dairy in north Aurora.

He was born in Sugar Grove.

Oberweis obtained his bachelor’s of art from the University of Illinois at Champaign-Urbana, and his master’s in business from the University of Chicago.

He supports term limits for politicians stating hat “incumbent politicians who already have power have rigged the system,” under the Jim Oberweis website.

Oberweis views the Affordable Healthcare Act as flawed, and believes it needs revision.

He also supports tax reform by lowering rate which would lead to more jobs, according to his website.

In education, Oberweis believes in placing teachers and parents in control over bureaucrats and unions as according to his statement under the Jim Oberweis website.

We cannot have teachers who fail the children and then are protected by a unionized system that makes it all but impossible to remove teachers who should be in another career,” he said.

He is a pro-life supporter and believes the issue of gay marriage should not determine by the federal government or courts, but rather be left up to the states to decide, as according to his website.

I just don’t think it should be necessary to re-define what has been a bedrock institution for thousands of years,” he said.

Oberweis also believes in establishing a system similar to the Bracero program once established and securing the borders in terms of the immigration issue.

Under the program, workers would work in the US and return home seasonally.

Running for a fourth term, Democratic candidate Senator Dick Durbin has served as Illinois senator since 1996.

He is the 47th Illinois Senator and also serves as the Assistant Majority Leader.

Durbin was born in East St. Louis.

He obtained his bachelor’s of science in Foreign Science in 1996 and his doctorate degree in law in 1969 from Georgetown University.

Durbin has campaigned for the Bank on Student Emergency Loan Refinancing Act, which would allow students to be able to lower their student loan interest rate.

The bill intended for student borrowers to save up to 2,000 by allowing those who have Federal Education loans or direct loans to refinance at 3.8 percent, if their loan was take out before July 1, 2013.

In education, Durbin supported the Dream Act, which allows immigrant students to earn legal status if they meet specific criteria.

Durbin approved investment in critical job training programs in Illinois, which would

ensure our workforce is trained and prepared for jobs in growing industries,” as according to the Dick Durbin website.

Durbin also supported a compromised between party leaders to cut 10 percent from the agricultural budget.

He also worked on the Great Lakes Protection Act, and approves Medicate and social security benefits.

He has also fought against tobacco and won a ban on smoking commercial airline flights in 1988 which later extended to all domestic flights, according to Durbin’s website.

Sharon Hansen is running as libertarian for this year’s election.

Hansen is from Edwards, but resides in California.

While Hansen is not a career politician, she has been endorsed by Certified Constitutional Candidates.

She obtained her nursing degree in 1972 in Oakland, Calif., and returned to school in 1982 obtaining her bachelor’s degree in Nursing Science.

Hansen shares her political views under her campaign website stating that the needs of the people should be first.

“I believe all who are entrusted with a position in Government must serve the public, not themselves and their wealthy donors,” Hansen said.

She supports prohibition of marijuana laws, and believes the issue should be addressed as a misdemeanor with a small fine if it is not legalized.

Hansen supports pro-life and the use of birth control, but believes birth control is a personal choice and should not be enforced through employee health, as according to her campaign website.

When it comes to gay marriage, Hansen believes that while they should have the same rights, they do not need governmental permission to live as a couple.

“We don’t need to change the definition of marriage in order for them to live the life they choose,” Hansen states in her campaign website.

Hansen also believes in the dissolving of the Department of Education, viewing it as a “non-valid role” of the federal government.

Under her campaign website, Hansen says it leads to increased taxes and “abuse by the layers of bureaucracy created,” and dissolving it will help improve the economy.

She also shares the Libertarian Party’s experience with the Republican Party and says people should have a choice.

“We fought the Republican party for 2 1/2 months to get on the ballot,” she said. “Republicans spent a lot of money trying to keep us off the ballot because they don’t want you to have a choice.”

Hansen said people deserve to have another choice, and that “Republicans and Democrats have run this Country for far too long.”

More information for the democratic and republican candidates can be found under the Dick Durbin and Jim Oberweis websites.

Further information about the libertarian party can be found under Sharon Hansen’s campaign website.

Debby Hernandez can be reached at 581-2812 or [email protected].