Dick and Judy White, our Illinois correspondents, have posted earlier about the Tammy Duckworth campaign for the U.S. House. Here is their third installment, reported by Judy.
It truly “rocks” to be a Democrat!
Last Sunday night we had the privilege of attending a concert fund raiser for Tammy Duckworth at a large local restaurant/bar/entertainment venue called John Barleycorn. The fund raiser was given by Joe Walsh - no, not her Tea Party Republican opponent in the House race –but the guitarist/singer formerly with the Eagles. The place was packed with approximately 500 attendees, who were all in a celebratory mood. The concert was spectacular – Joe had everyone swaying and dancing and, often, singing along. Popular entertainer Richard Marx (who makes his home in Chicago) also showed up and did a couple of numbers.
Joe was backed up by a five-piece band and three exceptional background singers, all of whom were allowed a solo piece. Very nice touch.
It’s an evening we won’t soon forget. To help us remember, here is a link to a local newspaper article:
Campaign activity has generally slowed since the primary, but is gradually picking up again now. Dick “marched” in a local Memorial Day Parade with Tammy as well as a 4th of July Parade on a very hot (100 degrees+) day. That’s dedication! He has also assisted the campaign staff with canvassing in some key neighborhoods. I have been volunteering one day a week at the campaign office doing whatever they need me to do, mostly making calls to encourage supporters to attend campaign events in their area.
Making calls for the campaign and canvassing are not always easy things to do. However, most of the response we have received is heartening and that’s what keeps us going. When we come across a non-supportive nasty response, at the direction of the campaign staff, we must “bite our tongues,” thank them for their time, and end the call. For me, in particular, this is extremely hard to do.
There has been one debate between the candidates to this point, which was not open to the public, but it was televised on a local station. Tammy did well overall, but we were a little disappointed. The two moderators seemed to allow Joe Walsh more time, allowing him to interrupt too often. He is not really running against Tammy – he’s running against President Obama, emphasizing her connection to and agreement with the President. The campaign staff, however, was happy with Tammy’s performance at the debate. She was challenged to a 2nd debate – while she was at camp with her unit (she is still serving in the Guard). I’m sure Mr. Walsh was aware of this, because she was totally out of contact and could not respond.
Joe Walsh made a major faux pas last Sunday at a Town Hall where he criticized Tammy for talking about her war injuries, saying “real heroes don’t talk about their military service.” In truth, Tammy will discuss her injuries to emphasize the top-notch medical treatment she has had with the VA – which makes her a strong advocate for Medicare and the ACA (and her advocacy for a single-payer system for all). She has never called herself a “hero,” but often refers to the fellow soldiers who saved her life as heroes. This is not the first time Joe has made derogatory remarks about Tammy. Also, he must not think that we, as his constituents, are very bright since he has said he plans to do “squat” for the District and prefers to be a poster child for the Tea Party!
Tammy is in the process of conducting an “American Dream” tour where she holds open meetings for all to attend and ask questions. As I understand, these have been very successful. We plan to attend a session this coming Monday evening at a local sports bar, hoping to bring some friends along with us.