Daily Herald opinion: Lauren Underwood endorsed for reelection in District 14

This endorsement is a consensus opinion of the Daily Herald Editorial Board.

From the start of her political career, we have been impressed by U.S. Rep Lauren Underwood's experience, passion and advocacy. She was just 32 when she defeated Republican incumbent Randy Hultgren in 2018. Yet the registered nurse had already served as a senior White House adviser to President Barack Obama on public health emergencies and had been involved in the launch of the Affordable Care Act.

And she has continued to impress us on a number of fronts. Underwood pledged accessibility early on, and she's followed up with more than 40 town halls in her district.

In her bid for a third term, the Naperville Democrat faces Kendall County Board Chairman Scott Gryder, whom we supported in the Republican Party primary. Of the five candidates running then, we believed he was best able to take on Underwood and step into Congress should he win in a district the GOP clearly wants to reclaim.

Underwood, however, is the stronger and more measured candidate.

On gun control, for example, Underwood supports universal background checks and banning the sale of assault weapons and high-capacity magazines. Gryder calls such moves “ludicrous” when current gun laws are not enforced. That's too dismissive in light of such tragedies as this summer's mass shooting in Highland Park. We feel that way as well about Gryder calling climate change “overblown” or his defense of the busing of migrants from the southern border to Illinois by Texas Gov. Greg Abbott.

Underwood has been an effective congresswoman and a dedicated public servant. She is endorsed for another term.

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