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Lauren Cook/MEDILL

Moderator Paul Green, political science professor at Roosevelt University, attempts to cut off U.S. Rep. Joe Walsh (R-Fox Lake).

Walsh supporters name their candidate as victor in Tuesday debate

by Lauren Cook
Oct 10, 2012


Lauren Cook/MEDILL

Walsh supporters said that although Duckworth performed better than they had expected, Walsh was far and away the winner of Tuesday's debate.

It was a ruckus both on-stage and off Tuesday night at a debate for the 8th congressional district in Rolling Meadows, turning up the heat in an already contentious campaign between U.S. Rep. Joe Walsh (R-Fox Lake) and Democrat Tammy Duckworth. This fervor was evident in a number of interviews with Walsh supporters following the event. 

“I was very happy the way the debate went … Joe Walsh definitely dominated the conversation and his points were a lot more valid than Tammy’s,” said Jeff Albee, 51, of Rolling Meadows. 

Steve Tucker, a Roselle resident, agreed. 

“I think Tammy’s answers were mostly the same, which was a lot of ‘we have to work together,’ ‘roll up our sleeves,’ you know, not a lot of specifics. I thought overall Joe won the debate, probably by far.”

For most Walsh supporters, like Shirlanne Slonka of Carol Stream, the debate was an important event for showcasing the most key issues in this election – the deficit and Obamacare. 

“My biggest issues here are jobs and the debt the country is in … I have a 7-year-old, so I want to be sure that things are better as he grows up,” she said. 

Tucker, also a parent, expanded on the debt issue, saying, “The trillion dollar annual deficit, the extra 5 trillion dollars the president has added to our debt and not passing a budget for over 1,260 days, the most basic function of government has not been achieved.” 

Madeline McNicholas, an Elmhurst resident, said the deficit and health care are the pre-eminent issues in this election because they are so closely tied.

“Health care is a big issue and that’s very intricately entwined with the economy. I think that’s the big thing that’s got to be addressed this year, because there’s going to be a lot of changes in this country if that bill is not repealed.” 

Every single person in the group of Walsh supporters interviewed supported the repeal of Obamacare. McHenry resident Debby Suess said repealing this legislation would “get the government out of every piece of our lives.” 

Reducing this type of government interference in our daily lives is the best way to get the country back on its feet, Suess said. 

“The way to get the government moving again is not for government to do it, but for the people to do it.”