Oberweis to get down to work as state senator

Published: Thursday, Nov. 8, 2012 5:30 a.m. CDT

Illinois Republican Party Chairman Pat Brady believes newly elected state Senator Jim Oberweis will be an asset to the Legislature.

“He will bring his business experience to the job,” said Brady, a St. Charles resident.

Brady believes Oberweis’ name recognition helped him secure the win. Oberweis is the chairman of Oberweis Dairy.

“But more importantly, he ran on real issues,” Brady said. “He ran an issues-oriented campaign.”

Oberweis, a Republican from Sugar Grove, scored a decisive victory over Democrat Corrine Pierog in the race for the 25th District seat in the state Senate.

Oberweis previously had five failed runs for office. He lost in campaigns for governor, the U.S. Senate and lost to Democrat Bill Foster in 2008 in the 14th Congressional District.

“I never intended to run as many times as it turned out to be,” Oberweis said Wednesday. “I had no intention to run for state Senate until several people asked me to.”

He had kind words for Pierog, a self-employed consultant and a St. Charles School District 303 board member.

“Both my opponent and I ran positive campaigns,” Oberweis said. “I think that the issues I was putting forth are more in line with the majority of people in the district. I’m very appreciative to the people of the district for giving me a chance.”

After her loss Tuesday, Pierog said she was “very disappointed.”

She said Oberweis won because of marketing, saying, “he had all the money in the world.”

“I’m very concerned that big business is going to dominate,” she said

The seat is currently held by state Sen. Chris Lauzen, who was elected Tuesday as the County Board chairman.

Oberweis said one of his goals as state senator will be to address Illinois’ pension problem.

“I plan to set up a meeting and see what other people are saying,” Oberweis said.

He also said he will work to make Illinois a more “business-friendly” state. In addition, Oberweis said he plans to address workers’ compensation and Medicaid reform.

Oberweis defeated Blackberry Township Supervisor David Richmond and Richard Slocum, a Sugar Grove resident who is a partner in an Aurora law firm, in the March primary election.

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