Rep. Tammy Duckworth, D-Ill., on Monday received the endorsement of the SEIU Illinois State Council, a vote of confidence from labor leaders and a pool of manpower that should help her in the three-way Democratic primary for the Senate seat held by Republican Mark S. Kirk.
“SEIU is an incredibly effective and diverse organization, and we share a commitment to fighting to improve the lives of working families and making our state a fairer and more decent place,” Duckworth said in a release. “I am proud to stand with the working men and women of SEIU, and I look forward to continuing to work to rebuild our middle class, create jobs and raise wages, and provide a measure of economic and retirement security for hardworking Illinois families.”
The second-term lawmaker faces Andrea Zopp, the former CEO of the Chicago Urban League CEO, and state Sen. Napoleon Harris in the Democratic primary.
The nod from SEIU provides Duckworth with the backing of 150,000 service employees and access to an army of seasoned political activists.
“We look forward to continuing to work with her in fighting for a fair economy that works for everyone,” SEIU Illinois State Council President Tom Balanoff said in a statement. He listed pay parity, expanded maternity leave and comprehensive immigration reform as core goals.
The Kirk campaign tried to throw cold water on the endorsement.
“While SEIU and Rep. Duckworth continue their partisan efforts to raise taxes on Illinois families while blocking reform, Senator Kirk chooses a different path by serving as an independent-minded, reform driven leader who is delivering results,” Kirk Campaign Manager Kevin Artl said in a statement.
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