By Robert Leach
The 11th Congressional District Candidate and former Congressman Bill Foster (D-Naperville) got a boost from the Assistant Democratic Leader of the US House of Representatives James Clyburn Tuesday at a breakfast meeting with local African-American organizations and the Ministerial community in the 11th Congressional District at the Route 66 Diner in Joliet.
Foster is in a tight race with Congresswoman Judy Biggert (R-Hinsdale) for the newly created 11th District according to South Carolina's 6th District Congressman Clyburn. "In order to get a Bill out of the House you need 218 votes and right now we have 191 and if we don't have 218 votes we are losing. This Congressional District can be, should be, must be one of the twenty-five votes that we need to get us to the 218.
Congressman Clyburn appealed to the organizations for their help to win the district. I'm here today to ask you all to redouble your efforts. It's going to be pretty easy for the President in this state but it isn't going to be as easy to pick up the congressional district from this state that we need. We are counting on Illinois to deliver five seats of the number we need to take back control of the House."
Foster spoke about his service as a former Congressman, "As all of you know I spent three years in the United States Congress and they were some of the most consequential years of our lifetimes and what we accomplished was great but is now very much at risk."
According to Foster, the two key issues facing the nation is the National Health Care Plan and the "Ryan Budget", a reference to Republican Vice-Presidential candidate Paul Ryan R-Wisconsin's plan. The Wisconsin Republican has been widely criticized for his plan to overhaul the Medicare system and eliminate the child tax credit for Americans as part of his overall budget plan.
"The Ryan budget is a mixture of dozens and dozens of things that will hurt people," Foster said. "If you look at the things my opponent Judy Biggert has voted for in her thirteen years of office, people have been very badly hurt by her votes."
"If you look at just one item in the Ryan budget, the loss of the child tax credit, will force the families of two million children out of the middle class and into poverty. This is something that strikes at the heart of struggling middle class people and will force them and their children into poverty."
Foster, a scientist and successful businessman in high-tech manufacturing, considers himself a champion for middle class Americans. His father was trained as a chemist, but spent much of his career as a civil rights lawyer. Foster's father was responsible for writing most of the enforcement language behind Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 -- the part that withheld federal funding from public schools that refused to racially integrate their school systems. His mother ran a program that helped college students prepare for jobs in the police and criminal justice system -- and to help working cops get college educations."
Foster commented that, "In order to protect those who depend on social services established as a safety net for all Americans, I am campaigning to earn the votes of the hard working men and women of the 11th Congressional District to help them secure their futures and ensure those who are unemployed with services they desperately need."