Endorsement: Schofield as GOP candidate to replace Tryon
House District 66 is guaranteed a new office holder, as incumbent Republican Mike Tryon is not seeking another term. All four candidates seeking to succeed Tryon are well-versed on the issues and argue their points passionately.
But it's hard to discern any dramatic differences among the candidates on all the big issues: term limits, pension reform, education funding and the budget impasse. So, it boils down to a matter of personal approach and style. This is where the four make the biggest impression. They are:
• Paul Serwatka, a Lakewood trustee who says his strongest selling point is, "I'm not a professional politician." He says he was first to vow not to take a state pension, and pledges to start a "property tax relief fund" with his first-year's legislative salary.
• Dan Wilbrandt, a West Dundee trustee and assistant state's attorney in McHenry County. Very articulate on the issues. He says his day job -- negotiating plea deals, sentences, under stressful circumstances -- make him best qualified to deal with the stressors in Springfield. He also touts his community roots, having lived in West Dundee his entire life.
• Allen Skillicorn, an East Dundee trustee, and a strong-willed and combative candidate who eagerly attempts to show the shortcomings of his ballot opponents. For instance, he showed up at the Daily Herald endorsement session with a packet of information claiming that Wilbrandt hadn't been a good steward of West Dundee finances.
• Carolyn Schofield, a former Crystal Lake council member and current McHenry County Board member. She seems to be the closest to a moderate Republican among the four, and vows to find a way to find common ground with Democrats. She cites a proven ability to bring opposing sides to the table in city and county government and finding solutions.
We give the nod to Schofield, whose temperament we find best-suited for the job.