After comments from Kim Kearby, outreach coordinator of the local chapter, and Conor Boylan, PDA field coordinator, candidates for Congress Ilya Sheyman and Vivek Bavda gave brief speeches about themselves and the issues before the floor was opened for questions from the public. Questions ranged from the inevitable regarding Social Security and Medicare, to their views on nuclear power and whether or not members of Congress should be exempt from prosecution while serving in Congress. Sheyman's and Bavda's responses were greeted with a constant stream of applause as they both seemed to truly embody the type of progressive candidates for which the people of Illinois' 10th District are looking.
Because both candidates made a good impression, the decision was a difficult one. After a careful analysis of the candidates and their remarks, a unanimous decision to endorse Sheyman was made by the chapter, making him eligible for a PDA national endorsement, which will be decided at the Tuesday Novemebr 22 meeting of the PDA Inside the Party Focus Group.
Since launching his campaign, Ilya Sheyman has quickly become a favorite in many Democratic circles around the district. His campaign has focused primarily on a grassroots approach to winning over voters in the district. Every weekend for months, Sheyman has deployed an army of supporters canvassing neighborhoods. He now has two offices in the district and seems to appear at every political event. Because of Sheyman's sincere and energetic campaign, he has been able to impress and engage voters and volunteers to support him.
Visit Ilya Sherman for Congress to learn more, volunteer, and contribute.
Read Sheyman's responses to the PDA Candidate Questionnaire here Ilya Sheyman Candidate Questionnaire
The candidate forum was the first large event sponsored by the newly formed chapter. All candidates who had officially entered the race and those still considering were invited to take part in the evening. Chapter members alerted local media, their local unions, held a phone bank, and put fliers up in local businesses, resulting in a great turnout by the public at large.