In the 37 years that we have published this newspaper, there have only been two occasions that we deemed important enough to stick our necks out and endorse a candidate. Savanna’s-own Steve Haring earned our endorsement both times he ran against incumbent 71st District State Representative Mike Boland.
This newspaper takes its responsibility to the public very seriously. Our readers and business customers depend on us for not only reliable delivery, but for information that is accurate and truthful.
That is why we have determined that the best person to represent the new 17th Congressional District that runs from Rockford to the Quad Cities and over to the Mississippi River is incumbent U.S. Congressman Bobby Schilling (R-Colona).
Actions speak louder than words. Bobby, as he insists you call him, is a man of action, no doubt about it. He started a business, St. Giuseppe’s Heavenly Pizza in Moline.
In fact, after the Quad City Times’ endorsement of their former employee, Cheri Bustos (D-East Moline), in her bid for Congress, St. Giuseppe’s Heavenly Pizza announced the endorsement of their founder and owner, U.S. Rep. Bobby Schilling.
“Bobby Schilling is exactly the kind of leader this country needs,” said Joe Schilling, Bobby’s son and the manager of St. Giuseppe’s.
Joe Schilling, also emphasizing that Bobby is a “great dad,” said that Washington needed “more upstanding, hard-working, family-oriented business owners like my dad.”
Bobby built his house. He and his wife Christie have 10 children. It is obvious that Bobby is not afraid of hard work.
When I first met Bobby, I told him that it would be great if campaign donations would be limited to one thing: gas cards. That way, the people that expect us to vote for them would have to drive the same roads we do, through the same downtown and communities where we live and shop. They would get a real view of daily life in their districts.
I believe Bobby took that advice. He has traveled from his home area in Colona north to Rockford alone nearly 50 times since the district was re-formed. His opponent - barely a dozen. He wanted to see the real people and places in the Northwest corner of Illinois, now in the 17th Congressional District.
If you haven’t already met him, you haven’t tried. Plus, many of us in rural America don’t just listen to sound bites and believe commercials. We want to look you in the eye and see what you are made of. Bobby has certainly not shied away from that challenge.
He saw things happening in his district - in his country - and decided to quit complaining and put his money where his mouth is, run for office, and be a leader for the people.
I have heard Bobby say this many times while on the road in Northwest Illinois: “What’s good for the people should be what’s good for career politicians in Washington,” Schilling said. “I didn’t come here for a wall plaque. I came here to fix problems.”
I believe he is a man of his word. Bobby Schilling has made leading by example in Washington a key part of his first term. I have not found too many politicians, either incumbents or candidates, that have come close to the following list of ways Schilling has led by example:
- He voted for a pay freeze on lawmakers’ salaries for both FY2011 and FY2012;
- Schilling proudly signed a letter to the Joint Select Committee on Deficit Reduction calling for reductions in lawmakers’ salaries;
- Schilling voted to reduce House office budgets by 5% in FY2011 and 6.4% in FY2012. He believes that government must live within its means, and that must start with Congress;
- Following the 11 percent cut to his office budget, Schilling kept a $110,000 surplus on his budget, which he returned to the taxpayers.
- Schilling Introduced a bill to reform congressional pensions - H.R. 2397, the Congressional Retirement Age Act;
- Schilling signed on to H.R. 1148, also known as the STOCK Act, and was the first freshman Republican to do so. Schilling asserts that the same standards that apply to other investors should apply to people in government making decisions that impact financial markets. The STOCK Act would make it illegal for Members of Congress and their staffs to use nonpublic information for financial gain.
In his endorsement of his Dad, Joe Schilling said, “I couldn’t be prouder to stand behind him.”