PI Original Angela Caputo Monday December 21st, 2009, 3:22pm

IL-10: A Debate In Deerfield And New Round Of Endorsements

Here's the latest from the Democratic primary in the 10th Congressional District: Yesterday, the candidates sparred in a debate at the North Shore Unitarian Church in Deerfield.  As the Tribune reported, Dan Seals and Elliot Richardson responded harshly after Julie ...

Here's the latest from the Democratic primary in the 10th Congressional District:

Yesterday, the candidates sparred in a debate at the North Shore Unitarian Church in Deerfield.  As the Tribune reported, Dan Seals and Elliot Richardson responded harshly after Julie Hamos' touted her experience as a state representative:

"There are lots of things that are wrong with Washington," said Dan Seals of Wilmette. "Not being enough like Springfield is not one of them."

"I’m a nice guy who hasn’t been in Springfield for the past 10 years," said Elliot Richardson, a Highland Park attorney. "I think that’s a good thing."

In addition to Sunday's debate, Hamos, Seals, and Richardson met with the Daily Herald editorial board last week.  As the paper noted, their views diverged when it came to the troop surge in Afghanistan last week, which only Hamos fully supports:

[Hamos] said [President Obama's] decision was determined after due diligence and met her criteria for moving forward, such as a timetable for withdrawal. [...]

Richardson said troops are logging four and five tours of duty there despite the fact al-Qaida "seems to have been dispersed."

"We need to get the troops home and stop sending them back," Richardson said. "We train Afghanistan forces and then we draw down our troops."

Seals said the U.S. should not pull out of Afghanistan but suggested focusing on special forces, drones and intelligence gathering to deal with terrorists. Situations that lead to terrorism, such as poverty, also need to be addressed.

The Herald also profiled the three Dems this morning.

In other news, the campaigns have posted some new web videos.  Hamos' spot highlights various endorsements from 10th district voters:

In his video, titled "Day of Action," Seals is seen crisscrossing the district, talking with voters about the economy and jobs:

Last week also saw a slew of new endorsements in the race.  Seals received the support of the Wheeling Democratic Organization, which overwhelmingly voted to back his candidacy.  From a press release:

"Dan has been committed to representing the people of the 10th District since 2005 and has never given up the fight.  Dan’s proposals for economic recovery, health care reform and affordable college education are proposals that can make a difference to the residents in Wheeling Township. The Organization is proud to endorse him,” said Kathleen Sances, Wheeling Township Democratic Committeeman.

Hamos also added some endorsements to her growing list. First was the Illinois chapter of the Stonewall Democrats:

"Stonewall Democrats of Illinois is proud to endorse Julie Hamos because she has a record of standing tall and vigorously defending civil rights," said Andy Shapero, Board Member. "Julie will be a progressive leader in Congress and a true advocate for the LGBT community."

Julie Hamos strongly supports full civil marriage equality and in Congress will fight to repeal the discriminatory Defense of Marriage Act and the military's "don't ask, don't tell" policy.

Two national women's organizations -- Feminist Majority and Women’s Action for New Directions (WAND) -- are also backing Hamos' campaign. From a joint statement:

Julie began her career as an attorney fighting for civil rights - focusing on the rights of women. She wrote the first laws to protect victims of domestic violence in Illinois, then fought to secure  funding for  programs and shelters geared toward the needs of abused women. As a legislator, Julie has fought for reproductive rights and currently supports health care reform leveling premiums paid by women and men.

In addition to the economy and health care reform, Julie Hamos will be a strong voice on foreign policy issues. Julie Hamos believes the war in Afghanistan requires a strategy to deal with the threat of Al Qaeda, as well as clear benchmarks in an exit strategy – not a "perpetual drift." In Congress, Julie will be vigilant in working toward these goals.

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