Congressional candidate Marie Newman met with community members on Oct. 19 to speak about issues ranging from LGBT-rights to her opponent, incumbent U.S. Rep. Dan Lipinski ( D-3rd District ).
Newman, who has worked as both a marketer and a rights advocate, said that she threw her hat in the political ring this cycle because, "There was a need and a will on my part."
Lipinski, who has been in office since 2005, has repeatedly come under fire for his votes in opposition to LGBT-rights and reproductive rights, among other issues. He has the Human Rights Campaign's lowest ranking of LGBT support among congressional Democrats.
Newman, who has a transgender child, explained that she got involved in activism and politics when her children had been bullied at various times. She pulled no punches in her criticism of Lipinski, even his work on transportation fundinghis district is a transportation hub for the region, and a number of transportation firms are among his donors. Newman attributed much of the district's funding to the work of other Democratic members of Illinois' Congressional delegation, among them U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin and U.S. Rep. Mike Quigley ( 5th District ).
Lipinski "hasn't brought money here and he hasn't brought jobs here," Newman said. She has so far raised about $300,000 for her run, and predicts she'll need about $1.2 million in total to remain competitive. Lipinski has so far raised about $1.5 million, she said.
Newman also discussed her perspectives on healthcare, small businesses, child care and living wages at the gathering, which took place at the downtown offices of the Bryan Cave law firm. Attorneys Coco Soodek and Ed Mullen hosted the talk.