Schneider, Dold talk immigration and jobs at North Chicago forum
Immigration reform and jobs were front and center Sunday at a candidates forum featuring the two nominees in the hotly contested 10th Congressional District race, Republican challenger Bob Dold and Democrat incumbent U.S. Rep. Brad Schneider.
Both candidates declared their support for immigration reform, with Schneider calling it a priority that would bring $22 trillion into the economy and cut the deficit by $200 billion.
"But more importantly, it will bring 11 million people into our communities, to buy homes, to start businesses, to educate their kids, to do the things that we need to do to move our country forward," he said during Sunday's forum in North Chicago.
Dold said he supports the DREAM Act, federal legislation that would allow certain immigrant students who have grown up in the United States to apply for temporary legal status and eventually become eligible for citizenship if they go to college or serve in the military.
He said he also supports reform to the visa process so that the best and brightest who come to this country to be trained could remain.
"As soon as they graduate with that master's degree or Ph.D, what do we do? We kick them out to go compete against us, when what we should be saying is, 'Please, stay here,'" Dold said.
Speaking on the issue of jobs, Schneider said he has sponsored legislation that would enable veterans to get on-the-job training. He said he has also held job fairs.
Dold said it is not only important that jobs come to the area, but that those jobs employ people from the area.
"Why are (jobs) going up to Pleasant Prairie, Wisconsin, or over to Indiana? We know it's not because of the weather," he said.
The forum also featured candidates for county board, state representative and Lake County sheriff.
Incumbent Republican Sheriff Mark Curran said crime has dropped more than 8 percent under his tenure. He also said he has promoted three women on his watch, more than in the entire history of the sheriff's office, and made strides toward making sure the office reflects the community to serves.
But Democratic challenger Jason Patt blamed Curran's office for lawsuits amounting to millions of dollars stemming from deaths of people in custody to discrimination against women.