Nancy Wade profiled on Examiner.com

Independents pose threat in 4 IL Congressional races

Nancy Wade was profiled on 9/5 on Examiner.com:

"Green Party candidate Nancy Wade is a battle-hardened social and political activist who brings her experience and passion to this Chicago north side race. From the feminist movement of the 70’s, to MoveOn.org and Occupy Wall Street, Wade always seems to be in the middle of the action. According to the candidate’s website, ‘Wade seeks to give the voters of the 5th District a progressive champion to fight for real solutions to the challenges we face.’"

Read more here... or continue below.

From Examiner.com:

September 5, 2012. Chicago. With Congress’ approval rating at a dismal 10 percent, it shouldn’t be any surprise that independents are putting up some fierce opposition to both the Democrats and Republicans this November. With both parties’ previous Governors currently in prison, Illinois voters might be ripe for a change. In four races across the state, independents are asking voters to send them to Washington.

The 2010 Illinois primary saw the lowest voter turnout (23%) in the 50 year history of Illinois election tracking. That shows a lack of participation within the Republican and Democratic parties. Consider this fact from the 2010 election cycle. While 1.7 million Illinois residents voted in the two parties’ primaries, 3.7 million voted in the general election eight months later. Without any other barometer to use, those numbers suggest there are 2 million independent voters in Illinois, or more than 50% of the state’s entire electorate.

During the March 2012 primary in Illinois, voter turnout was only 24 percent in Chicago. Throughout the rest of the state, the numbers ranged from 16 percent in Madison County to 29 percent in McClean County. It’s apparent that voters are turned-off by the process as well as the parties.

For that reason, this could be the year for an upset or two by independent and opposition party candidates in any of the handful of races where they are mounting a serious challenge to the establishment’s status quo. Below is a brief summary of the four races that could send the first independent or third party to the US House.

*Interesting fact, while 42 percent of voters identify themselves as independents, out of 435 House members, there are zero independents. And out of 100 US Senators, there are only 2 independents.

Spotlight on Illinois races for the US House (* = incumbent)

CD – 2

Jesse Jackson Jr. (D)*
Brian Woodworth (R)
Marcus Lewis (i)

A lifelong Chicago resident, independent candidate Marcus Lewis sees himself as one of the too few success stories out of the rough and tumble south side. He is a veteran of the city’s Harold Washington Party and no stranger to taking on the Chicago Democratic Machine. Lewis’ two biggest complaints against the currently incapacitated Jesse Jr. are his “broken personal promises” and “lack of attention”. Jackson has been hospitalized for depression since June 10. Read the August 13 edition of this column titled, ‘Could MIA Jackson Jr send first Independent to House?

For more information on Marcus Lewis, visit the candidate’s website at MarcusLewisForCongress2012.org.

CD – 5

Mike Quigley (D)*
Dan Schmitt (R)
Nancy Wade (G)

Green Party candidate Nancy Wade is a battle-hardened social and political activist who brings her experience and passion to this Chicago north side race. From the feminist movement of the 70’s, to MoveOn.org and Occupy Wall Street, Wade always seems to be in the middle of the action. According to the candidate’s website, ‘Wade seeks to give the voters of the 5th District a progressive champion to fight for real solutions to the challenges we face.’

For more information on Nancy Wade, visit the candidate’s website at WadeInCongress.org.

CD – 6

Peter Roskam (R)*
Leslie Coolidge (D)
Khizar Jafri (i)

Independent candidate Khizar Jafri is a citizen-candidate who touts, “I do not believe in politics as a career choice: it is a service to the country and the well-being of its people.” With a strategy that concentrates as much on character and integrity as it does on specific issues, Jafri says, “I intend to return Congress to a time of sincerity and honesty, to steer it away from the political radicalism held on both sides of the aisle today.”

For more information on Khizar Jafri, visit the candidate’s website at JafriForCongress.com.

CD – 12

Bill Enyart (D)
Jason Plummer (R)
Paula Bradshaw (G)

Green Party candidate Paula Bradshaw is proving to be one formidable campaigner. She took part in the race’s televised debate and continues to make the rounds of the state’s radio stations. In this far downstate district, Bradshaw has pledged to run a grassroots campaign, not accepting corporate contributions. The Green candidate also takes a firm stand on civil liberties. She declares, “Reverse the attacks on the Bill of Rights, starting with repealing the PATRIOT Act, then I’ll take on the Military Commissions Act, the Homegrown Terrorism Act, the Protect America Act, and the National Defense Authorization Act.”

For more information on Paula Bradshaw, visit the candidate’s website at Bradshaw4Congress.org.

Unfortunately for independent voters in Illinois, their choices this November will be somewhat limited. As an example, independent Congressional candidates filed petitions to run in 7 different races. Ballot challenges by the two establishment parties however, reduced the final slate to just 4 formidable candidates.

Stay tuned for additional reporting on the above races.

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