CHICAGO (WLS) -- In the closely-watched U.S. Senate race, Democratic incumbent Tammy Duckworth and her Republican challenger Kathy Salvi are talking about what they think are the key issues for voters deciding this contest.
It's the first time Kathy Salvi has run for statewide office and she is still introducing herself to many voters. The 63-year-old Republican nominee for Senate compares herself to David versus Goliath in her race against incumbent Tammy Duckworth, but she remains positive.
"I knew when two weeks ago when she went negative on TV," Salvi said. "It was just what I was hoping for. Shows me that I'm right in the hunt."
Duckworth's most recent ad is all positive.
"In the last weeks before the election the race always tightens up," Duckworth said. "But I have no worries that she's gonna make up sufficient ground."
Duckworth has a huge fundraising advantage over Salvi, which has allowed her to buy TV ads while Salvi has relied on other means of getting her message out.
"All people of good will want the leadership I could bring," Salvi said. "I'm anxious to serve and to lead. I think that it's just what we need."
Salvi and Duckworth are on opposite sides of several key issues in the race. Tammy Duckworth ranks the top three issues facing Illinois residents as the economy, abortion rights and putting caps on pharmaceutical prices. Kathy Salvi says the top three are economy, education and crime.
"This is an issue that is clearly a differentiator between myself and my opponent," Duckworth said. "She doesn't support access to abortion at all, with no restrictions."
"The uptick in crime is at record proportion and I would squarely put this on the lap of Tammy Duckworth," Salvi said. "Every time she had an opportunity to vote to fund the police, she voted against."
Salvi, however, does not support a ban on assault weapons. Duckworth, an Army veteran, is a gun control advocate.
"I know what these weapons of war do to human bodies," Duckworth said. "They're weapons that belong on the battlefield, not on the streets."
Recent polls show Tammy Duckworth with about an eight-point lead, but that Salvi has picked up support in recent weeks.