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Anderson plans town hall tour, aims to debate Hultgren

Dennis Anderson, the Democratic challenger for the 14th Congressional District seat, will begin a districtwide town hall tour this month that will include a few Kane County stops.

The tour kicks off May 22 in Woodstock, and the first Kane County town hall will be held from 7:15 to 8:30 p.m. June 3 at Baker Community Center, 101 S. Second St., St. Charles.

Anderson, a Gurnee resident, plans to hold up to 25 town halls in all. He said he likely will speak to open each town hall event, then take questions from the audience for the rest of the time.

"I certainly hope that the town halls will give people the opportunity to get to know me," Anderson said on Friday. "I tend to make myself as available as possible."

Separate from his town halls, Anderson said he also hopes to appear at other events, including debates with his opponent, incumbent U.S. Rep. Randy Hultgren, R-Winfield. Hultgren previously defeated Anderson for re-election in 2012.

Anderson said he and Hultgren were invited to six events during the 2012 election cycle, but they had only one full appearance together.

"I'm hoping we get some inviations [from other groups], but I certaintly intend on reaching on to him," Anderson said.

Hultgren, in a prepared statement Friday, did not directly address whether he would debate or appear with Anderson. Hultgren did say his time at this point is best spent focusing on addressing the needs of his constituents.

"I have heard about my opponent's press release announcing a series of campaign stops masked as town hall meetings in an effort to gin up financial support for his campaign," Hultgren said in the statement. "We will have plenty of time to campaign in the fall."

Anderson said the congressional calendar should allow time for Hultgren and Anderson to appear together at some point. Anderson said events that feature the incumbent and himself as challenger are a valuable service to the public.

"I think that seeing both of us on stage ... provides an opportunity for voters to see, to listen, to question and make a good determination," Anderson said.

Anderson's next Kane County appearance after June 3 has not been finalized. The campaign is looking at Elburn, Big Rock and Aurora's west side as possible locations for another upcoming town hall, he said.

If you go

What: Town hall tour for Dennis Anderson, 14th Congressional District candidate
When: 7:15 p.m. to 8:30 p.m., June 3
Where: Baker Community Center, 101 S. Second St., St. Charles
Cost: Free

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