After a tough primary against a fellow Republican incumbent, U.S. Rep. Adam Kinzinger now must take on Democratic challenger Wanda Rohl this November.
Both Kinzinger and Rohl want to see more jobs come to Illinois’ 16th Congressional District, but they have different approaches and philosophies. The northern and western parts of DeKalb County are in the new 16th Congressional District.
Kinzinger, a pilot in the Air National Guard, said he believes job creation will come if the right environment is created both in Illinois and the country in general.
“Regulation, both in terms of paperwork and the burden of following it ... is getting out of control,” Kinzinger said, adding that talking to small businesses and fixing their problems will help create jobs.
Rohl, a self-described “rural-progressive Democrat,” said she would bring jobs back to the United States through her “Buy American” program.
“Everything from steel and staples needs to be done in this country,” Rohl said, adding that the country can retake its position as manufacturing capital of the world.
Rohl, a social worker, said she also wants to keep intact the government safety net that helped her after she was paralyzed in an ATV accident in 2003. She said Kinzinger wants to cut those programs.
Kinzinger said he favors smaller government, but the only way to tackle the country’s massive budget deficit is to reform entitlement programs such as Social Security and Medicare.
“You can’t balance the budget on that part of the government,” Kinzinger said.
Rohl and Kinzinger have opposing viewpoints on the Affordable Care Act. Rohl says it should be fully implemented, and Kinzinger hopes that a President Mitt Romney would work to repeal it.
Going into the home stretch, Kinzinger has a huge money advantage over Rohl, according to OpenSecrets.org, a website run by the Center for Responsive Politics that tracks of federal election contributions.
As of Thursday, Kinzinger has collected $1.9 million in campaign contributions, while Rohl has collected just more than $28,000.
Rohl said she has turned down money from national and corporate political action committees, adding that Kinzinger has not done the same.
“He votes for the best interests of his investors,” Rohl said, referring to Kinzinger’s supporters.
Kinzinger described as Rohl as being a flip-flopper, saying that she did ask for outside help from the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee before being turned down by them. He added that she also deleted Facebook messages and blog posts about it, too.
“She’s run a campaign of ‘do as I say, not as I do,’ “ Kinzinger said, adding that many of her Democratic colleagues do have some kind of PAC support.
Education: Bachelor's degree, political science, Illinois State University
Career: U.S. Congressman; pilot in the Air National Guard
Marital status: Not available
Education: Master's degree, social work, Aurora University; bachelor's degree, social work, Aurora University
Career: Social worker
Marital status: Married