HOMER GLEN, Ill. (WLS) -- Democrat Marie Newman and Republican Mike Fricilone are vying to replace long-time congressman Dan Lipinski in Illinois' 3rd congressional district in the House of Representatives.
The district covers quite a lot of territory, from rural Will County to the Southwest Side of Chicago, but the two candidates say voters are actually quite similar.
"We all care about working families, workers and the middle class," Newman said.
"They are all hard working people, a lot of blue collar people, so it's not that diverse," said Fricilone.
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What is diverse is the views of the both candidates. Newman supports universal health care, which Fricilone says is not representative of the district.
"I'm running because we need someone who represents the values of our district, not the extreme leftist values like my opponent, socialist Marie Newman," he said.
"Clearly I'm not a socialist," Newman countered. "I'm just a standard Democrat that was elected in the primary because I'm a real Democrat with solutions to help working class people."
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Newman beat longtime congressman Lipinski in the primary. She said the biggest issue in this election is COVID-19 and rebuilding the economy. With COVID-19 number surging again, she supports Gov. JB Pritzker's latest crackdown on Will County businesses.
"We cannot rebuild the economy until we keep people safe, it's simple as that," she said.
Fricilone defends President Trump's handling of the virus and, contrary to some medical experts, says it's safe for some populations to get back to normal life.
"The younger generations, they don't seem affected by it, that's why we need to get back to school and work," he said.
While their views differ, both candidates agree that if elected, infrastructure in the 3rd District will be a priority.
And no matter who wins, it will be the first time in decades that someone other than a Lipinski has represented the 3rd District.
Marie Newman, Mike Fricilone vie for Illinois 3rd congressional district seat
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