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There’s a spirited Democrat primary race going on in Illinois’ 10th congressional district. The winner of the March 20th primary will square off in November against freshman Republican Bob Dold in a district that, after redistricting, leans slightly blue.

Today, three progressive organizations launched an effort by direct mail and by telephone in support of our champion Ilya Sheyman. The blitz, which is intended to reach 28,000 likely voters in the 10th CD, points out one candidate’s support for far-right wing Republicans.

First, some background.

The 10th CD contains portions of Cook and Lake counties. It stretches from Winnetka through Waukegan and from Lake Michigan west through Round Lake. It includes all or part of the following townships: Avon, Benton, Deerfield, Grant, Libertyville, Moraine, Shields, Waukegan, West Deerfield, Vernon, Zion and parts of Fremont, Lake Villa, Maine, New Trier, Newport, Northfield, Warren, and Wheeling.

Four candidates are seeking the Democratic nomination: Sheyman, corporate consultant Brad Schneider, Vivek Bavda and John Tree. According to any metrics you might want to employ – polling, fundraising, on-the-ground organizing -- Sheyman and Schneider are the frontrunners.

But these two candidates are more different than alike. Sheyman is pro-choice, pro-environment, pro-workers’ rights and worked with groups like MoveOn to end the Iraqi war.  Schneider has a record in opposition to environmental protection, women’s rights and taxing millionaires.

Schneider has voted in at least two Republican primaries. And he has a record of donating to far-right Republicans, including Senators Mike Johanns of Nevada and Robert Bennett of Utah, and Reps. Mike Rogers of Michigan and Mark Kennedy of Minnesota.

So today, USAction Fund for a True Majority, Political Action and Communications Workers of America –COPE (CWA-COPE) launched a targeted effort to let voters in the 10th CD know about Schneider’s record.
You see: It’s not enough for us to elect Democrats to Congress. We’ve been down that road before. We need to elect a committed progressive who will stand up for women’s rights, Wall Street reform Social Security and Medicare.

If it walks like a duck and quacks like a duck, it’s a duck.

Election Day is March 20th.

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