WGN Radio: What you need to know about 3rd congressional district democratic candidate: Marie Newman

Bill and Wendy speak to 3rd Congressional District Democratic challenger Marie Newman. Newman talks about her business background, her stances on important issues like minimum wage and health care, why she is taking on this challenge to get Lipinski out of office, her thoughts on Arthur J. Jones, and much more.

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Washington Examiner: A Dan Lipinski defeat could spur future primary challenges

If Rep. Dan Lipinski, D-Ill., is beaten by his progressive opponent in next month’s primary, liberals are hoping it sends a signal to other potential candidates that they can take on an incumbent from the left and win.

A number of Democratic lawmakers have attracted challenges from the left but few are as endangered as Lipinski, and he’s receiving no help from the party apparatus.

With influential progressive groups in her corner, businesswoman and nonprofit executive Marie Newman is closing in on the seven-term congressman.

Three weeks out from the March 20 primary and Lipinski is in the fight of his career.The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee has held back on endorsing him despite promises, reported by Politico, that it would do so. Members of the Blue Dog Coalition, which Lipinski co-chairs, have bristled at the snub by DCCC and are stunned by their Democratic colleagues fundraising for his opponent.

Progressives see Newman’s bid as a test. Does the Democratic Party believe a woman’s right to an abortion is a core principle — Lipinski opposes legal abortion — and can a progressive oust an incumbent Democratic congressman?

Those rallying behind Newman, argue that Lipinski doesn’t represent the district’s views on a variety of policy issues. In his time representing the solidly blue district, Lipinski has voted against LGBT rights, abortion rights, the Dream Act, and the Affordable Care Act.

“It’s not just Dan Lipinski, but there are Democrats in blue districts across the country that do not represent the policies of voters in those district, whether it’s about holding Wall Street accountable or whether it’s about Medicare for all,” said Waleed Shahid, spokesman for Justice Democrats. “This is really going to send a message to those Democrats that they should be held accountable and watch their back.”

Shahid criticized Democratic campaign arms for trying to clamp down on grassroots candidates, making it harder for them to secure resources and access. But so far, few challenges from the left against sitting Democratic lawmakers have gained steam.

If Newman wins, Shahid predicted, that could change, especially in future cycles.

“Marie Newman and the organizations that have endorsed her have shown tremendous courage to stand up to that [Democratic] machine,” Shahid said. “If Marie Newman wins it will send a big shock wave and there will be more of this stuff happening.”


WGN 9: Angry progressives back Newman over Rep. Lipinski in IL District 3​

CHICAGO — Tensions between the liberal and centrist wings of the Democrat Party are soaring in Illinois District 3.

Longtime centrist Dan Lipinski is taking fire from national progressive groups, who are pouring in support for his opponent.

This year, a seven-term Chicago-area congressman has drawn a serious primary challenge.

Progressives have set their sights on Lipinski, an anti-abortion Democrat who voted against the Affordable Care Act, also known as Obamacare.

“What I know is the district and I are running this race together for Congress. Mr. Lipinski is running against us in every way and it’s not just health care. They know he is anti-worker, anti-working families, he is anti-LGBTQ,” Marie Newman, a former marketing consultant and anti-bullying advocate, said.

Newman is a first time candidate hoping to tap into anti Trump, #MeToo and grassroots Democratic energy.

With the backing of national progressive groups such as NARAL Pro-Choice America and EMILY’s List, Newman is hammering Lipinski on abortion.

“He also is on an absolute mission against women. He has voted to restrict a woman’s right to choose somewhere upwards of 50 times and several times tried to take funding away from Planned Parenthood, Newman said.


The Gate: “The Lipinski Monarchy is Over”: An Interview with Democratic candidate for Congress Marie Newman

Marie Newman is a Democratic candidate for Congress in Illinois’s Third Congressional District, where she is challenging incumbent Representative Dan Lipinski (D). Rep. Lipinski has held the office since 2004, when the prior incumbent, his father, retired after eleven terms. Mrs. Newman is challenging Rep. Lipinski, a member of the more conservative Blue Dog caucus, from his left. A local businesswoman and executive of the national non-profit “Team Up to Stop Bullying,” Mrs. Newman is a proponent of Healthcare-for-All and has been endorsed by Senator Bernie Sanders’ organization, Our Revolution, as well as Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, EMILY’s List, and Rep. Jan Schakowsky.

The Gate: Rep. Dan Lipinski has been in office since 2004. Why did you choose this cycle to launch a progressive campaign against him?

Marie Newman: The district has been displeased with him, probably, from the outset. He started his congressional career in a very shady way: he inherited the seat. He did not have to campaign, and he came in at the last minute and inherited the seat in in a very poor, disrespectful, and shady way. He started out on a bad note with the district, and I certainly have been watching his votes and career, and it’s always been alarming, but I’ve had kids to raise and lots to do, as did everybody.

This district is a working families district that is very busy working one, two, three jobs, not making enough money, but he doesn’t care about it. But nobody has the time to stop their job, or to shut down their business, and take on an entrenched congressman that is heavily supported by the Chicago machine. When you ask, “Why now?”, it’s because we’re all fed up. We’re all fed up. We’re done. We’re done with the machine and with the Lipinski monarchy. It’s over.

When I started my exploratory committee a year and a quarter ago, not only did the data in the district show us that Rep. Lipinski’s unfavorable ratings were extremely high, but that he was wrong on every issue, and that he’s done nothing. He’s been a very inactive congressman. So, when my path––people had asked me some time over the years to run, and I just couldn’t, because I was busy with my kids, et cetera––now, as we looked at November of 2016, the day after Trump, I realized that we’ve got to save us. Nobody was coming to save us, so we, the people of the Third District, had to save us. That’s when I started running with the District. I’ll often say in meet-and-greets, of which I’ve had a hundred and thirty, “We’re doing this together because we’re running in alignment. The district is running in alignment with me and we are together running for Congress. Mr. Lipinski is running against us.” We have to save ourselves, and we have to get this problem solved.

When I decided to run, it was because I knew I was in alignment with the district, and it was desperately needed. Rep. Lipinski has very dangerous views: he is against healthcare for all, he voted against the Affordable Care Act, he votes against immigrants at every turn, he is anti-DREAM Act, anti-path to citizenship, and anti-refugee. We are a country filled with immigrants and refugees. We were all immigrants once, so the fact that he is against all of us is sad.

He is against fifteen dollars an hour, which is despicable. I turned to him in the Sun-Times interview––he believes that “Twelve dollars an hour is enough”––and said to him, “Let’s do that budget. You’re going to feed your family on that. You’re going to have a roof over your head. You’re going to get to and from work, take your kids to and from school. You’re going to clothe them, and, if they have any level of activities, you’re going to take care of that.” You can’t really live on those items with twelve dollars an hour, and then you need to get healthcare. That’s impossible. He didn’t know what to say, sat there agog. He has no idea how much things cost, he is completely out of touch. He doesn’t understand healthcare, he doesn’t understand immigration policy, and he has done nothing for working families or the middle class. There’s nothing there that works for us, for the district.


WTTW – Chicago Tonight: 3rd Congressional District Forum: Dan Lipinski and Marie Newman

Of all the congressional incumbents running in Illinois, one Democrat is facing a strong challenge. Illinois’ 3rd Congressional District has been represented by Dan Lipinski for 13 years. The district has traditionally leaned moderate to conservative, but has steadily become more progressive, favoring Bernie Sanders over Hillary Clinton in the 2016 presidential election. And that move leftward has produced a progressive challenger to the centrist Lipinski.

Lipinski and his challenger, LaGrange businesswoman Marie Newman, join Chicago Tonight for a conversation.

The 3rd Congressional District: This largely suburban, Democratic-leaning district reaches roughly from the southwest edge of the city, to the southwestern suburbs (parts of Western Springs and Burbank) and down to northeastern Will County (Lockport).

Washington Post: A conservative Democrat in Illinois feels the ire of his liberal base

PALOS HILLS, Ill. — After 30 minutes of hissing and heckling — and cheers for his opponent — Rep. Daniel Lipinski (D-Ill.) had heard enough. After Marie Newman, the liberal activist running against him, attacked him for not favoring a “clean” deal that would let undocumented immigrants stay in the country, he let loose.

“She claims they’re going to sit down and magically make it happen,” Lipinski said at a candidate event here this month. “Look, the Freedom Caucus is a major problem. The tea party is a major problem. Having a tea party of the left that makes promises about what’s going to magically happen — it’s not going to work. It’s a fantasy.”

The argument didn’t appear to move anyone in the room. Hundreds of people had packed into the only forum before Lipinski’s upcoming primary on March 20. It was a sign of just how much trouble he could be in — and, depending on the primary’s outcome, a sign of how much less tolerant the Democratic base has grown of candidates who stray from liberal orthodoxy.

“I really do agree with Marie more than him, on the issues,” said Susan McNulty, 76, a retiree who lives in nearby Lemont. “I don’t think he’s a bad person. I just disagree with him.”

Lipinski, one of the last antiabortion Democrats in the House, and one of only a few to oppose the Affordable Care Act, was confronting many of the voters who want to oust him. Working with them are a number of liberal groups that have tried and failed to beat Lipinski in the past, but that are now piling into his suburban Chicago district, trying not just to replace him but to send a message about who should and shouldn’t represent the Democratic Party.

“He doesn’t have true Democratic values, and his record proves it,” said Ilyse Hogue, the president of NARAL Pro-Choice America PAC, in an email to donors this week. “This isn’t some deep-red district. This district is solid blue. The seat has been held by a Democrat for 58 out of the last 60 years. Yet Lipinski votes more like a right-wing Republican.”

For 35 of those years, the district has been represented by someone named “Lipinski.” In 1982, then-Chicago alderman Bill Lipinski ousted a Democratic incumbent to take over the working class, suburban district. Twenty-two years later, Lipinski retired, and local Democrats handed the nomination to his son Dan. It was a controversial move, but one that voters seemed to validate two years later by helping the younger Lipinski through a bitter primary. In 2008 and 2012, progressives tried and failed to recruit a challenger.

Then came the “resistance.” Newman, a former advertising executive who became an anti-bullying and pro-gun safety advocate, had been approached to run for lower offices; after the 2016 election, she took “a deep data dive” into the district and came out convinced she could win. Hillary Clinton won here by 15 points. Bernie Sanders had carried the district in the primary, and Newman had supported him.

“We have the Lipinski dynasty, supported by the Chicago machine, so it’s like pushing a boulder up a hill,” she said. “But when people learn how he’s voted, his unfavorables are in the 70s.”

For months, Democrats looked at Newman and saw yet another candidate who would probably come up short. Lipinski ended 2017 with $1.7 million to spend; Newman ended it with $237,000. The Democrats who run nearly every office in the district endorsed Lipinski, as did the AFL-CIO. The bitterly contested primary for governor promised that rank-and-file Democrats, familiar with the Lipinski brand, would be turning out on March 20.

That changed last month, after local Democrats saw polling that found Newman gaining on the incumbent. On Jan. 17, two of Lipinski’s liberal colleagues, Rep. Luis Gutierrez (D-Ill.) and Rep. Jan Schakowsky (D-Ill.), endorsed Newman at a news conference in Washington. Gutierrez ripped into Lipinski for opposing the Dream Act, which would provide protections for immigrants brought illegally to the United States as children; Schakowsky asked why Chicago’s blue suburbs still had an antiabortion congressman.

“I assure you that this district is overwhelmingly pro-choice,” Schakowsky said.

“The nation has moved forward,” said Gutierrez. “He would be all right in Congress in 1996.”

In the following weeks, Newman became a bona fide liberal cause. The state branch of the Service Employees International Union backed her, as did Emily’s List, which liberals had criticized for not endorsing Newman sooner. Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.) scheduled a fundraiser for Newman; Planned Parenthood jumped in against a congressman who “time and time again tried to take away women’s access to health care.”

Suburban Chicagoland: Lipinski and Newman square off

Democratic hopefuls in 3rd House meet at MVCC

The two candidates seeking the Democratic nomination – and barring a miracle – the next two-year term in Congress representing the 3rd House District, went toe-to-toe for about an hour Wednesday night.

A political forum, not a debate, hosted by the League of Women Voters was held in a large meeting room in Building M at Moraine Valley Community College. An overflow crowd estimated at about 500 heard from the incumbent, U.S. Rep. Dan Lipinski, and challenger, Marie Newman.

Newman took the more aggressive role, taking shots at Lipinski’s record throughout the evening and talking about changes she’d bring to the job. Afterwards, she said she thought the evening “did a really nice job of creating a clear contrast between Mr. Lipinski … our value systems and our moral systems.”

“I think a lot of people don’t understand his voting record and his dangerous views. He doesn’t seem to believe people deserve a livable wage, affordable child care, and paid leave and benefits for folks who work hard. When he says he’s for working families, I find that very hard to believe,” Newman said in the lobby.

Lipinski, who saved harder verbal jabs for his closing statement, said afterward that the format was difficult because he was unable to answer charges levied against him by Newman.

Neither candidate responded to frequent catcalls from the audience. One especially vocal Newman supporter left before he was asked to leave.

In his closing comments, Lipinski touted being endorsed by the Illinois AFL/CIO and 25 other unions, including the Fraternal Order of Police, and by the Chicago Tribune and Sun-Times.

“I’ve fought for women in the workplace. I’ve fought for fair treatment of women and equal pay for equal work. That’s why I’m endorsed by 56 women who are elected officials in this district. I work with local elected officials to solve problems, transportation, flooding, railroad noise and other issues. That’s why I’ve been endorsed by 30 suburban mayors and seven Chicago aldermen in the 3rd District,” Lipinski said.

Each candidate took turns answering questions submitted by the audience and covering a wide range of issues. They were asked by Annie Logue, president of the League of Women Voters of Chicago. She ran a tight ship, often reminding audience members to not shout comments and refrain from applauding.

The first question, a timely one given the recent shootings in Florida, was about curbing gun violence.

Newman endorses extensive background checks, and urged reviving a ban on assault weapons or have a semiautomatic weapon ban.

“Responsible gun owners should have as many guns as they like, however, some – domestic abusers, criminals, terrorist, and those with mental illness – who should not have guns. That’s just common sense,” Newman said.

Lipinski said he “received an ‘F’ from the NRA,” adding that he’s co-sponsored and voted for bills urging more background checks, and wants limits on the ammo capacity of guns. More, he said, should be done for mental health care as well. “There’s a lot we have to do.”

Reproductive rights, a hot button issue in the campaign, were also discussed.

Lipinski said he’s working on trying to help women “who have an unplanned pregnancy and are seeking help,” adding “there’s more we can do to help women so they don’t feel it necessary to seek an abortion.”

Newman said “I do trust women, and families to do what they need in accordance with their beliefs,” noting that “Mr. Lipinski has tried to defund Planned Parenthood seven times.”


Chicago Tribune: Lipinski, Newman trade barbs at sole debate of nationally watched congressional race

U.S. Rep. Dan Lipinski and challenger Marie Newman on Wednesday night traded barbs over social issues and the best way to get things done in Washington in the only debate of a congressional race that’s drawn a national spotlight as a stand-in for the Democratic Party’s future.

First-time candidate Newman repeatedly criticized the seven-term Lipinski for social positions that she said are too conservative for the 3rd District, which takes in a swath of the Southwest Side bungalow belt and dips deep into the south and southwest suburbs.

“He sponsored (the Religious Freedom Act) because he’s anti-LGBTQ, and I’m just going to play that exactly as it is, because he is,” Newman said.

Lipinski, a former university professor who succeeded his long-serving father in the congressional seat, cast himself as the pragmatist who takes common-sense positions for constituents who want him to get things done.

“A lot of things that Ms. Newman talks about, she plays that somehow it’s going to magically happen,” he said. “What we need to do is sit down and work out some compromise. Compromise has become a dirty word in Washington. The Tea Party, the Freedom Caucus are a major problem. Having a Tea Party of the left that makes promises about all these things that can happen magically, it’s not going to work.”

The forum at Moraine Valley Community College in Palos Hills was packed as a crowd that the League of Women Voters pegged at 568 people cheered, booed and shouted back at the candidates as they answered questions submitted via email ahead of time and on slips of paper at the event.

The format discouraged direct back-and-forth between the two, with a moderator giving each a chance to respond to the same question before moving on to the next one. Nonetheless, there were several moments of testiness.


Talking Points Memo: Can ‘The Resistance’ Defeat One Of The Most Conservative Democrats In Congress?

Rep. Dan Lipinski (D-IL) has spent his career sticking his fingers in the eyes of progressives, vocally bucking his party on everything from abortion to Obamacare to gay rights, with few repercussions. In less than a month, they have their first real chance to strike back.

The congressman has long been able to get away with a laundry list of conservative votes in his seven terms in Congress and has avoided a real primary challenge for years, aided by close ties to Chicago’s powerful old-school Democratic machine.

But in the year of red-hot Democratic activism, the #MeToo movement and brutal urban and suburban backlash against President Trump , those old-guard powers are facing a reckoning. And just weeks ahead of Illinois’ March 20 primary, the congressman is coping with perhaps his biggest political threat since his father, longtime Rep. Bill Lipinski (D-IL), retired and anointed him his successor in 2004.

Marie Newman, a former advertising executive, anti-bullying and gun control advocate is gunning for his seat — and has won a number of endorsements from heavy-hitting liberal groups.

“There is a definite path to victory for her, where in past primaries I haven’t really seen that materialize. I think this is a good year in that district for a real Democrat, and a woman. This is going to be a very good year for women,” said Rep. Jan Schakowsky (D-IL), who endorsed Newman in what she told TPM is the first time she’s ever campaigned against another sitting Democratic congressman. “There’s this sense of unity, of being off the sidelines, in the fray, going to vote, and all of that significantly plays into the energy around her candidacy.”


Chicago Sun-Times: Lipinski, Newman spar over campaign financing in Democratic primary debate

U.S. Rep. Dan Lipinski was put on the defensive again by Democratic primary challenger Marie Newman at a Wednesday night forum, with Newman throwing barbs at Lipinski over campaign financing and his ties to Illinois House Speaker Mike Madigan.

It was the first time the incumbent and challenger met on a public stage, and Newman packed the crowd of more than 400 with boisterous supporters at a League of Women Voters event hosted at Moraine Valley Community College, the heart of the hotly contested 3rd Congressional District that covers most of Chicago’s Southwest Side and the southwest suburbs.

The race has drawn national attention as a possible test of voter mood in the wake of President Donald Trump’s election, with Lipinski — a Democrat seen as right of center — facing a potential backlash in favor of the progressive Newman.

Newman says Lipinski, 51, has fallen out of step with voters after 14 years in charge of the heavily Democratic district, attacking the incumbent for his anti-abortion stance as well as his views on gay rights and immigration.

The La Grange businesswoman zeroed in on those topics as she did during a Chicago Sun-Times Editorial Board meeting last month. This time, though, she went after Lipinski because his campaign got a boost from about $37,000 in spending from a North Carolina super PAC

“That is dark money, straight up,” Newman said.