Assistant Veterans Affairs Secretary Tammy Duckworth returns to Illinois on Tuesday to campaign with Democratic Senate candidate Alexi Giannoulias, making her first appearance for a November contender. Duckworth, a wounded Iraq war vet, is the former Illinois Department of Veterans Affairs director.
She will appear with Giannoulias at a job training event in Chicago at the Volunteers of America Illinois on Tuesday morning and then head to Champaign-Urbana for an afternoon town hall meeting on veterans issues where Sen. Dick Durbin (D-Ill.) will be joining them.
Giannoulias faces Rep. Mark Kirk (R-Ill.) in the contest for President Obama's former Senate seat with every recent public poll showing the race in a tie. One of Kirk's major credentials had been his 21 years in the Navy reserves--though his record was tarnished this summer when stories surfaced about Kirk embellishing his career.
Duckworth is the second military official to campaign with Gianoulias. Last week, retired four-star Gen. Wesley Clark campaigned with Giannoulias at an event in Chicago.
Duckworth is also helping out in another Illinois race where a Democrat is facing a rival who served in the military.
Duckworth on Wednesday will be in Joliet for a town hall meeting on veterans affairs with Rep. Debbie Halvorson (D-Ill.) locked in a tight re-election race in the 11th congressional district with Republican Adam Kinzinger, who was a captain in the Air Force.
In 2006, Duckworth narrowly lost a House race in the 6th congressional district to Rep. Peter Roskam (R-Ill.)