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Local

Balkema joins GOP race in 11th Congressional

Chris Balkema is joined by his family Tuesday in North Aurora as he announces he will run as a Republican for the 11th Congressional District.
Chris Balkema is joined by his family Tuesday in North Aurora as he announces he will run as a Republican for the 11th Congressional District.

NORTH AURORA – In announcing that he is running for Congress in the 11th Congressional District, Grundy County Board member Chris Balkema on Tuesday said he would work to break the gridlock in Congress.

"That is unproductive to the average family in America that is trying to make ends meet," Balkema said after his announcement at Superior Asphalt in North Aurora, a division of Geneva Construction. Balkema said the country needed "another 100,000 of these businesses around the country to fuel the economic engine."

Balkema is running for the seat now held by U.S. Rep. Bill Foster, D-Naperville. He will run as a Republican and face challengers in the March 18 primary election, including conservative talk show host Ian Bayne of Aurora and State Rep. Darlene Senger, R-Naperville.

The 11th District includes North Aurora, Aurora, Naperville, Lisle and Joliet. Foster has held the seat since November after defeating former U.S. Rep. Judy Biggert. From 2008 to 2011, Foster represented Illinois’ 14th Congressional District in the U.S. House of Representatives.

Foster was defeated in November 2010 by then-state Sen. Randy Hultgren, R-Winfield.

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