Monday, October 23, 2006

Firing the Big Guns

The Democrats’ big guns are coming out in support of Tammy Duckworth. U.S. Sen. Barack Obama (D-IL), considering a run for his party’s presidential nomination in two years, is featured in the latest television ad endorsing Duckworth while today, in Chicago, former President Bill Clinton provided his official backing.

The latest Chicago Tribune-WGN Channel 9 poll says that Duckworth is running nearly tied with Republican Peter Roskam. She’s supported by 39 percent of the people in Illinois Sixth Congressional District, says the poll, compared to Roskam, who is supported by 43 percent of the voters.

Without a doubt, this is the strongest run any Democrat has ever made for the office she seeks. Still, her campaign is out of money and gives every appearance of being lackluster.

Yes, the new ad helps, as does the endorsement from the former President, but more needs to be done in the next two weeks if she hopes to win. She needs to remove the gloves and create some more excitement about her candidacy.

The highlight of the new television commercial is Senator Obama explaining that Tammy supports the same illegal immigration legislation that’s supported by 2008’s leading Republican presidential candidate, U.S. Sen. John McCain.

Duckworth has taken some hits from Roskam over her support of this legislation. By saying that she supports the same legislation that’s supported by McCain, Democrats are attempting to show that she’s, at the very least, a centrist, not some crazed liberal.

To be sure, highlights of the illegal immigration legislation that was passed in May by the U.S. Senate include allowing illegal immigrants who have been in the United States for two to five years to enter a temporary worker program.

Those inside the country for more than five years are eligible for citizenship after an 11-year probationary period. They’re also required to learn English as well as pay a penalty and back taxes. Those illegal immigrants here for less than two years would be returned to their home countries.

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