IL-14: Bolingbrook Debate Thread

Video of Monday night’s debate among the congressional candidates for the 14th congressional district

Please, use the comment to tell everyone what you think.


IL-14: Bolingbrook Debate Thread — 14 Comments

  1. Wow.

    First impression, all the candidates did good, some more than others.

    Right up until closing statements, Jim Oberweis was concerned about Sue Rezin.

    Then came the hit on Ted Gradel.

    Oberweis, Rezin and Gradel are all the top candidates and Oberweis and Rezin both receive an “A”, and Gradel an “A-“.

    2nd tier candidates of James Marter, Jerry Evans, and Catalina Lauf:

    Lauf: “B”, actually brought up Citizens for Rauner but was very clear to only say “JB”, not mentioning she worked against Jeanne Ives. Also, her cheap shot in opening statements about the petition objection with one of the co-objectors, Wheatland Township Trustee Greg Nichols, came across as petty, and Oberweis wisely ignored her because he knows she’s not going anywhere.

    Marter: “B++”, he’s very weak on the fundraising question, and that is what holds him back. He does talk the issues.

    Evans: “B+”, better debate than in Batavia. Bringing up fellow DuPage residents Peter Roskam and Jeanne Ives was very good.

    Catella: “B-” we know he’s not going anywhere, but provided general insight to this race.

  2. Mr. Lopez,

    At this point you are so far from reality.

    This is how we know you are so blind you cannot even see clearly what is so obvious to everyone else.

    Sorry, you were not there.

    And the debate winner was not even close.

    The debate winner last night, was to your dismay, Catalina Lauf.

    Rewind and try again.

    Sit down until you report the truth.

  3. At least one “Laufer” on this thread detached from reality….. almost kin to the common Marter supporter who refuse to acknowledge that he’s in reality competing with Lauf for 4th place at best.

    Likely 5th or 6th.

  4. I’m voting for Oberweis. Imagine if the unelected ILGOP State Central Committee put him up against Obama instead of that clown Alan Keyes.

  5. This is sad and funny.

    Not long ago John Lopez was accused of favoring Catalina Lauf.

    Now he is criticized for not saying she won the debate.

    He calls it like it is and sometimes the facts don’t fit the desired narratives of some commenters.

  6. I appreciated that they did the unique, personalized tough questions (gotcha) for each candidate. With such a short debate, they probably should have skipped either closing or opening remarks. A lot of this stuff was repeat, so it wasn’t that informative if you’ve been following the race. Issues got skimped.

    Kind of difficult to rate the candidates on this one. They were on a more equal footing tonight and all did pretty well. I’ll try…

    Rezin: B It was uphill battle, but she made a reasonable case for her committing the political sin of paying for the bills (gas tax issue). She went after Oberweis, but it wasn’t a knockout punch. She needed to do swing though and she did. She got the last word too. When Oberweis mentioned her name, she turned it into an attack on him and then the moderator didn’t let Oberweis rebut her rebuttal (which was probably a good thing because we can’t have back and forth forever). Better than her first debate, not as good as the Batavia one. Whether it’s on stage, in person, or on camera, Sue is kind of dopey. Not like dumb-dopey — she’s obviously one of the wonkier candidates and that’s one of her strong suits — but dopey as in she sounds tired. At one point it seemed like she was reading off a script. The only person who was as obviously reading off a script was Catella.

    Marter: B+ He did good but my expectations for Marter are higher. He should have gotten into the bloodsports with some of the other candidates. He needs to peel away voters from someone or multiple candidates to win. I am not sure that this debate performance did that. Probably not. Once again, he showed that he is with the base on the issues and he knows the issues. He did a good job at seeming relatable. I liked the line about working at warehouses and board rooms. He didn’t do as much Trump brown nosing as usual. I don’t know what it is, but there’s something missing. Marter is one of those politicians with a high floor but a not so high ceiling, and his supporters are “sticky.” Am I using a double standard for Lauf and Marter? No, because Lauf picked up support tonight but Marter probably remained where he was before.

    Gradel: B- Started pretty good (b plus a minus territory) but Oberweis’s attack on him at the end was brutal. Gradel was shook after that. It completely ruined his closing statement. He even lost his words for an awkward moment. His justification for that literature that mentions Madigan/Pritzker was actually a good argument, so I give him credit for that. He had some good moments but it was all overshadowed by Oberweis’s sneak attack. He probably should have emphasized his fundraising numbers more, because they are something to brag about. He missed a good opportunity there to show a strength and he could have tied it into an attack on Oberweis.

    Lauf: A Hands down she was the most improved candidate, but she was arguably the best candidate period. I thought the attack she did right out the gate on Oberweis was good, and I like that she kept the pressure on Republicans during the debate. She was more relaxed and confident. Her point about social media and engaging young people is spot on and Republicans need to wake up to this reality. She didn’t have gaffes. Other than a little finger fidgeting at the beginning, she did great. Her quip on not having to worry about her being a career politician since she was a job hopper had excellent timing, humor, and the message was on point. Would anybody like Lauf more if she worked at Uber for an extra year? If that’s the biggest gotcha you can get on her, that’s nothing compared to some of these other candidates’ skeletons. She was powerful when she talked about her supporters knocking on doors. This comeback is probably too little too late. She’s a tough fighter, but Oberweis showed he was too and he has a lot of money. If people were on the fence about her or, worse, former supporters considering switching to someone else, she gave them reason to stick around.

    Catella: B Had sense of humor, had no bad gaffes. For any other candidate, that probably wouldn’t be enough to earn them a B, but my expectations of Catella just aren’t that high. Everybody knows he is in over his head. His knowledge of history is impressive. On second thought, when he mentioned that he has 25 dollars, that was a gaffe. The citizen legislator thing is admirable, but the people in the room are realists and they know it’s going to take more than 25 dollars to win a congressional seat. When he talked about the value of precinct committeemen, I think that was one of his better moments. Other than Lauf, Catella was most improved.

    Evans: B- Nothing bad, but I’ve heard it before. He missed an opportunity to bust out the specifics on his fundraising during his gotcha question. His numbers weren’t bad considering how late he got into the race. He had a good opportunity to point out that he has more cash on hand than Marter despite when he got in. Or he could have contrasted his fundraising to Oberweis and Rezin who have special interest money. He’s playing too nice for a bottom tier candidate. Who are the nice guys? Catella and Evans. Look what they have to show for it.

    Oberweis: A- Somewhat forgettable to start out with but his performance was a crescendo. That line about being far right was cringe (nobody thinks he’s the most right wing candidate on stage). He was good at spinning his failures into success and his early political career as far right given that people criticize his more youthful liberal comments. He also at least somewhat effectively attacked Rezin by bringing up her residence not once but twice. I call baloney on anybody who says her residence is not a big deal. He’s ahead of her by 30 points — so it sure ain’t helping her. Watching how aggressive he was, I think he assuaged some of the fear that he would be a pushover and not really go hard against Underwood.

  7. Oberweis attacked Rezin for the gas tax too. I forgot to include that.

  8. Lauf clearly won this debate John, sorry to break it to you……

    You probably know this but are tired of being accused of supporting her.

    She was on fire and has a great sense of reality.

    She is the only one with nation attention, and the only one on that stage to beat Lauren Underwood.

    Who knew Sue Rezin had such a TERRIBLE voting record.

    What a joke she is, 2% of funds donated by grass roots, probably just backed by Caterpillar.

  9. Cal requested to know what the gotcha questions were.

    If you want to get them verbatim, skip to about 18 minutes into the video and watch until about 32 minutes in.

    This is my summary of them, plus some stuff I missed in my previous comments.

    Rezin’s was a question about her support for the gas tax hike, siding with Democrats on the issue, and how can we trust she would be a conservative voice in Washington.

    Lauf’s was about being a job hopper and how can we trust her to stay focused in congress. I have to mention my adoration for Lauf calling out one of the Wheatland Township Republicans by name. Long ago I said Lauf needs to call people out by name, and she did.

    Oberweis’s was that he voted present on the gas tax and he has lost tier one races. He avoided answering the gas tax question — Marter and others missed an opportunity to call him out for that. Rezin zinged him by saying he had no way of paying for infrastructure other than handing out ice cream coupons. Catella’s facial reaction to that one was priceless. I probably should have rated Rezin higher, maybe a B+, but Oberweis’s attack on Gradel at the end erased a lot of what happened earlier in the debate in my opinion.

    Catella’s was about lack of money and name recognition.

    Gradel’s was about U.S. Stem Cell Clinic. Oberweis circled back to this at the end of the debate. Oh, and I forgot another attack that Oberweis did during the debate — calling Gradel out for claiming Oberweis was funded by Madigan allies. Oberweis said neither he, Rezin, or any candidate on stage was being funded by Madigan and that Gradel should retract what his lit said.

    Marter’s was about how he has grassroots support but lacks in fundraising, and how can he compete with Democrats who will have millions. Marter believes he will get funding from the Freedom Caucus and that Trump will come to the 14th to help him.

    Evans was about how he has very little name recognition, no fundraising (a lie), and he hasn’t donated to his own campaign. (I’m not sure if Lauf has donated to her own campaign either.) How do we expect to take him as a serious candidate? This question was unusually harsh compared to the other candidates and may have affected how people saw Evans. Come to think of it, I gave him a pretty low score for this…

    The only question I saw as being biased was Evans’ question. For the most part, this was an airing of grievances and it needed to come up before March 17th.

    So, Cal, have you been to any gift shops lately?

  10. Thanks for the Bgrade!

    Not bad.

    What made it obvious I was reading from my script was that I held the page too high, I am going to try to speak without one at least once at the next forum.

    I have since made more strides at getting my name and message out!

    As to the comment referring to me that I am going nowhere well hey I am the only candidate who’s been a minister so at least I can say “I’ve got a prayer.”

    If not me who?

    If not now when?

    And I’ve also been a soldier and that means I will never quit and I will never accept defeat!

    Please know also my dear citizens I have signed a pledge to support the winning candidate and I shall be true to my word.

    Thanks to all and now it’s on to Huntley on March 2nd.

    See you at the forum!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *