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About the Candidate

Name: Bobby L. Rush
DOB: Nov. 23, 1946
Occupation: US Representative of the 1st Congressional District of Illinois
Political Experience: 1983 - 1993 Member of the Chicago City Council 2nd Ward and 1993 - present a member of the U.S. House of Representatives for the 1st Congressional District of Illinois.
Twitter: @bobbyrushfor1st

Candidate Statement

Hello. My name is Bobby L. Rush and I have spent the last years of my career in public service PROUDLY representing the good people of the First District of Illinois.

With your support, I will return to Washington to continue to do the work that I started.

The last four years have been pretty perilous for us all.

When Democrats were the minority, we defended landmark legislation, such as the Affordable Care Act from from a very hostile administration which was OBSESSED with undoing the Obama legacy.

This Congress, I have introduced and supported numerous bills aimed at protecting the lives and livelihoods of people all across our district, while also uplifting the most vulnerable members of our society with bills such as the Protecting Consumer Access to Generic Drugs Act of 2019, as well as the Blue Collar to Green Collar Jobs Development Act.

Whether it’s ensuring that my constituents’ have access to lifesaving drugs, or spearheading workforce programs, I will continue to fight for the people of this district.

As a senior member of the House, as well as the Chairman of the Subcommittee on Energy, I am positive that we will be able to usher in further groundbreaking reformations to improve the public health, ending senseless gun violence, safeguard the environment, and ensure adequate protections consumers.

Simply put, this election presents us with an incredible opportunity to pass even more robust legislation.

We can, and will, GET IT DONE.

Thank you.

Candidate Q&A

Why are you running?

In the 1st Congressional District, a great deal remains to be done in the areas of economic development (including jobs) and health care. In economic development, we must continue working to increase African-American participation in the energy workforce. This is a highly lucrative sector that would provide meaningful and sustainable employment and wages. That is why, as a member of the U.S. House of Representatives, I remain committed to continuing to provide job opportunities for those who seek meaningful work and a living wage. With the ongoing threat of climate change, we must prioritize environmental interests and social justice issues and that is why they continue to be important factors in my commitment to my constituents.

Regarding health care, it is vitally important that we help improve access to quality health care for the residents of the 1st District, including lowering prescription drug prices and increasing access to preventive screenings and affordable treatment options. That is why it is so important what we continue to support our community health centers and why I seek to continue my service: so that I can keep up the fight for funding for these critical facilities and continue to work to ensure affordable access to care and lower prescription drug costs. Community health centers serve as an affordable option for those living with diseases such as diabetes, heart disease, and other life-threatening illnesses as well as treatment for those living with mental illness or fighting addictions, including those affected by the opioid epidemic that has recently plagued communities across our district, state, and nation.

What is your vision for this office?

My vision has been consistent throughout my time in office. I remain committed to serving and being available to my constituents, both in Washington and at home. I work very hard as the Chairman of the Subcommittee on Energy and as a member of the Subcommittee on Consumer Protection and Commerce and the Subcommittee on Health to ensure that our work is representative of the country, as a whole, and that it represents the diversity of voices that make up my district. I am proud to say that, as a senior member of the Congressional Black Caucus, I have encouraged my colleagues to embrace this outlook on the committees on which they serve. I further believe that it is my duty to maintain an open-door policy and remain available to my constituents.

What do you think is the most pressing issue facing your constituents and how do you plan on addressing it?

The biggest issue facing my district is the epidemic of gun violence. This problem is exacerbated by the lack of jobs and access to education. While these may seem like distinct issues, they are, in fact, interconnected because a lack of educational opportunities leads to a lack of jobs, which is a key factor in the rise in violence.

I have introduced and supported legislation to address all of these issues. In the current Congress, I have introduced H.R. 33, the Gun Trafficking Prohibition Act, which would prevent trafficking in firearms and straw purchasing of firearms illegal under federal law. This legislation is vital because the majority of gun violence in Chicago is perpetrated through trafficked and illegally-purchased weapons. Furthermore, I have introduced H.R. 4061, the Blue Collar and Green Collar Jobs Development Act. This bipartisan bill would establish a comprehensive, nationwide program to improve education and training for underrepresented groups, including minorities, women, veterans, and others, to increase the number of skilled workers trained to work in energy-related industries, including manufacturing, engineering, construction, and retrofitting jobs. Furthermore, at my urging, the Committee on Energy and Commerce’s Subcommittee on Health held a historic hearing at Kennedy–King College, in my district, on the public health impact of gun violence and what can be done to stem this epidemic.