Rauschenberger touts experience in U.S. Senate race campaign stop

Posted Thursday, September 25, 2003 by Webmaster

By Doug Wilson
Herald-Whig Senior Writer

State Sen. Steve Rauschenberger says his experience in government makes him the best candidate for the U.S. Senate seat being vacated by Peter Fitzgerald.

?After serving 11 years in the Illinois Senate I am ready,? Rauschenberger said this morning during a press conference at the Adams County Courthouse.

?I spent six years honing my beliefs on the grindstone of practicality under Gov. Jim Edgar. I spent the next four years standing up against the abuses of the George Ryan administration, and I have spent the last year speaking out against the ward politics of the new governor. I am ready,? Rauschenberger, a Republican, said.

As a member of the Senate Appropriations Committee, Rauschenberger has been known as a budget hawk who looked for ways to balance the Illinois budget. He said the state constitution requires a balanced budget, but there is no similar provision in the U.S. Constitution. Although Rauschenberger said he wants to see the federal budget balanced, he does not fear short-term deficits if they are designed to boost economic recovery.

?I?m not troubled by this year?s deficit or next year?s, but I am concerned that we curb it and return to balanced spending? as the economy recovers and as the war on terrorism winds down, Rauschenberger said.

The top issues facing the nation this year are support for President Bush and the troops and the need for job creation, Rauschenberger said.

?I believe we need to be committed to making sure every American who wants to work can get a job in the community they want to live in.

?We need to keep American job growth strong by keeping taxes low, reforming our judicial system and focusing our workman?s compensation systems on injured workers,? Rauschenberger said.

He said China is one of the nations that does not have a fair trade system but has gotten away with blocking U.S. goods while exporting Chinese goods to America.

Rauschenberger said the nation must find a way to enforce fair trade laws so that U.S. exports are not blocked and manufacturing jobs are defended.

Rauschenberger, 47, is a native of Elgin and represents portions of Cook and Kane counties in the Chicago area. He has won the support of a long list of Republicans throughout the state.

Rauschenberger also was enlisted last year by Speaker Dennis Hastert of Yorkville to distribute $1.6 million in campaign funds.
He said Fitzgerald was right to let everyone know he would not run for re-election. It cleared the field for other Republicans to run and possibly retain the seat for the party.

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