Breaking it Down: 16th District U.S. Representative Race
In the next installment of our in-depth series, Breaking it Down, 23 News speaks with the candidates running for the 16th District Congressional seat.
ROCKFORD, Ill. (WIFR) - The race for the 16th District is set, Republican incumbent Adam Kinzinger faces off against Democratic newcomer Dani Brzozowski.
In search of his sixth term, Kinzinger brings close to ten years of congressional experience and before running for re-election, he says he took a hard look at how he could continue to serve his constituents in the best way.
“I see the job of a congressman or congresswoman as both representing aggressively the interest of your district but then also doing what you think is right for the country. That’s why, there was a question of ‘Do you, do you just do what the district needs or do you do what your opinion is?’ and I think it’s a combination of both,” said Rep. Kinzinger.
With years as a community organizer under her belt, Brzozowski says her work in the district goes beyond the typical representative.
“As I built a career out of trying to help other people and lift my community up, I saw the things that have been difficult for my family getting harder for other families, not easier and decided to run for Congress, really, to give us all the kind of fighting chance we deserve and the kind of representation who’s going to make sure that the interests of the working families who comprise this district, really has that kind of representation,” said Brzozowski.
With the Rockford region still recovering from the economic impact of COVID-19, both candidates say they’re committed to getting the community back on track.
“Right now, it’s turned into, on some levels, any time we see the virus surge at all, we’re shutting everything down. We can’t do that. This virus is going to be around for the rest of our lives. The hope is we have a vaccine that can help, but it’s going to be around and we can’t live in fear of it; we just have to take precautions to do the right thing and not destroy our economy in the process,” said Rep. Kinzinger.
“We need immediate leadership in figuring out contact tracing and how we can do that in a way that is as significant and organized as is really necessary and of course we need to be working together to restore faith in our, in all of our scientific institutions to ensure that when we’re able to pass a vaccine the American people feel comfortable taking it so that we can finally move forward move past this,” said Brzozowski.
As Election Day looms, both candidates say they’re dedicated to the constituents of the 16th District and plan to do whatever they can to push the best interests of voters to the front of the line in Washington.
“Regardless of whether they identify as, you know, a Republican, a Democrat or something else is that they’re looking for real representation, they’re looking for accessibility and transparency and accountability. They’re looking for someone who’s going to show up for them, who’s going to listen to what their problems are, who’s going to understand those problems and he’s going to come up with solutions to address those problems,” said Brzozowski.
“700 some thousand people voted for me to represent, even if they didn’t all vote for me and my job is to represent their interest, not my party’s interest. Now, most of the time, I’m going to agree with my party, but there’s times when I don’t and it’s required and incumbent upon me to call that out and that’s what I’ll continue to do,” said Rep. Kinzinger.
Both candidates say no matter who gets your vote, make sure to exercise your right to do so.
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