By Dale Bowling
Mike Quigley is the incumbent Congressman and Democratic candidate in Illinois' 5th Congressional District which comprises parts of Cook and DuPage Counties. I had the privilege and interviewing him yesterday.
DD: Which DuPage communities are served by the 5th Congressional District?
MQ: Bits and pieces of Elmhurst, Oak Brook, Oakbrook Terrace, Bensenville, Wood Dale, Villa Park and Addison Township. I grew up in Carol Stream. I went to Glenbard North HS, my first job was at the Wheaton bowling alley, I attended the College of DuPage for a couple of years, so I've been a part of DuPage County from the beginning.
DD: You're the incumbent in the 5th District. How long have you served in Congress?
MQ: Almost 4 years. I was sworn in in April 2009 by Speaker Nancy Pelosi.
DD: What motivated you to run for Congress originally?
MQ: All the things I was working on at the county level - Reform, Equality, Choice - as a member of Congress I have the opportunity to promote these on a much larger scale.
DD: If you had to come up with a one sentence ad for your campaign, what would that one sentence be?
MQ: "Representing the entire district."
To me, this means more than just geography. This means representing minority views, bipartisanship, fairness, accessibility. Everyone has the right to be represented fairly and equally.
DD: What issues do you think are the most important for Congress in this election?
MQ: Economy, Economy, Economy. It's so important that we continue this positive economic growth we've seen recently. Whatever we do, it's really important that we have transparency. I remember when I came in, it was on the heels of the Blagojevich scandal. The cost of corruption is the loss of the public's faith. If we bring back transparency and accountibility we can improve the public's view of what we're doing in Congress.
DD: As you know, DuPage Co. is a very middle-class county. What specifically would you do to help the struggling middle class?
MQ: The best thing to do for the middle class is to create jobs and one of the best ways to do this is to improve our nation's infrastructure. Only 7% of the Stimulus money went to infrastructure, but infrastructure improvements produced the majority of the jobs that the Stimulus created. So a big infrastructure bill would create jobs for the middle class and give the Country something it needs. There's no such thing as a Republican bridge or a Democratic highway. We need to pass a meaningful Bill that rebuilds our country, creates jobs and reduces our dependence on foreign oil.
DD: How does one get involved in your campaign- either to donate to your reelection fund or to volunteer for the campaign?
MQ: The easiest way is to go to quigleyforcongress.com. All the instructions are there. We are encouraging everyone to get involved with the other Democratic races that affect them as well- Local, State and National.