Chicago Sun-Times
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Duckworth: Sends out appeal to Cegelis, Scott voters. ``We must join together.''


On Thursday, Democratic 6th district congressional nominee Tammy Duckworth issued a plea for support from backers of defeated rivals Christine Cegelis and Lindy Scott.

Duckworth has some work to do to rally the Cegelis and Scott troops behind her bid to defeat state Sen. Peter Roskam (R-Wheaton).

Mehlman hosts a ``media roundtable'' with Roskam in suburban Addison.

This is Duckworth's letter...

Dear Friends:

Three months ago, I announced my campaign for Congress— a campaign to bring change to Washington and a new direction for our country. Since then, I have been encouraged to meet so many of you who share this commitment, and who volunteered your time and energy to our campaign.

On Election Day-- our hard work paid off.

Today, I want to thank each and every one of you for helping to deliver our message of change. I want you to know that, between now and November, I will work as hard as I can to justify your faith in me.

I also want to voice my admiration for my two fellow primary candidates-- and the people who supported them.

As I said Tuesday evening, Christine Cegelis is a person dedicated to high ideals who ran a formidable campaign. Christine and I share a common set of beliefs on the issues that matter most to the people of this community. Above all, Christine believes deeply, as I do, that we need to change the direction of this country.

Christine showed, through her deeds, that it is not enough to simply say that the country needs to change—it's up to all of us to do something about it.

By running for office, putting forth her ideas, and developing a core of active and energetic supporters who are equally dedicated to change, Christine Cegelis performed a great service to our community and our country.

Lindy Scott also brought great energy and insight to this race, and I have tremendous respect for him and the race that he ran. I look forward to working with both Lindy and Christine to advance the principles we share in the months and years ahead.

Now, the hard-fought primary is behind us, and we must join together in the ultimate goal of defeating Peter Roskam and winning this seat in November. After all, the stakes are high, and this opportunity—to compete for and win an open seat in the 6th District—comes once in a generation.

There are stark differences between our values—and those of our opponent.

Peter Roskam's extremism is out of touch with this community's mainstream values.

From his opposition to the scientific advances that can come from stem cell his opposition to a woman's right to his support for—and financial support from—those who oppose sensible gun laws like a ban on military-style assault weapons....Pete Roskam's agenda reflects the values of his mentor, Tom DeLay. It does not reflect the interests and concerns of the 6th Congressional District.

Peter Roskam will support the status quo in Congress, which is being dictated by the special interests—at a time when our nation's problems demand real leadership for change. Dick Cheney put it best when he came to this district and praised Roskam as the kind of "partner" he needs in Congress.

We know better. We deserve a Representative in Congress who will stand up for this community, stand up to the special interest and stand up for the change the people of this country need.

I'm running because I think Congress should put our interests – not the special interests – first. That begins, first and foremost, with the issue that has been the centerpiece of my campaign: bringing affordable, accessible healthcare to all Americans who need it.

Again, I want to thank each and every one of you who turned out on Election Day. Thank you for your commitment to our community and to our country.

For those who supported me, I promise to work my hardest to justify your faith in me. For those who supported either one of my worthy opponents, I promise to work my hardest to earn your trust and support.

Let's join together to win in November, and bring the change our country needs!


Tammy Duckworth


"For those who supported either one of my worthy opponents, I promise to work my hardest to earn your trust and support."

And we anxiously await any indication that these are more than just empty words.

Grassroots volunteers join a cause for change. They are not mindless followers who buy into mass marketing brochures. I truly believe that both Democrats and Republicans are strongly dissatisfied with their party. A strong independent candidate could draw votes from both parties.

The "appeal" to supporters of Christine Cegalis sounds as if it were written by Rahm Emmanuel or another Democratic Party "spin meister." If not, Tammy Duckworth is merely a relative clone.

Progressive democrats will not obsequiously follow the party line because a candidate happens to be an opponent of the existing regime. Rather, we will support candidates who have the fortitude to confront progressive issues openly and honestly without attempting to gain favor through highly financed political posturing.

There is a movement across this country that trancends the machine politics of old; an admonition candidates of both parties should heed.

As a New Yorker who's totally against the Democratic Party establishment I'll apologize on behalf of my senator Hillary Clinton for her part in railroading Cegelis by holding fundraisers for Duckworth.

I think this letter is very disingenuous I think what Cegelis and her supporters are doing by going out and helping not Duckworth but progressive candidates who are not backed by the establishment is the right thing.

I also heard that she did not go to the unity breakfast which was good too.

This totally pisses me off and i'm not even from IL. I'm a progressive political junkie/activist/operative in NY who's had enough.

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Lynn Sweet

Lynn Sweet is a columnist and the Washington Bureau Chief for the Chicago Sun-Times.

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About this Entry

This page contains a single entry by Lynn Sweet published on March 23, 2006 5:58 PM.

Sweet column: Duckworth faces struggle to unite Dems in 6th cd after Cegelis strong showing. Where is Howard Dean on this? was the previous entry in this blog.

Bush: Marks Greek Independence Day, travels to Pa., Ind. to headline funders. Nigerian President Olusegun Obasanjo to the White House next week. is the next entry in this blog.

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