10th District Republican hopefuls back 'dreamers,' DACA
Partisan bickering may dominate the Washington, D.C., landscape, but during a forum Sunday in Highland Park, the three candidates in the 10th Congressional District Republican primary said they would reach across the aisle if elected.
Libertyville physician and entrepreneur Dr. Sapan Shah, Highland Park resident Jeremy Wynes and Deerfield business consultant Doug Bennett are vying for the GOP nomination to challenge Democratic U.S. Rep. Brad Schneider in November.
On immigration, all three candidates voiced support for "dreamers" and measures to maintain protections offered under Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA).
"Our jurisprudence has never looked at minors as having the same culpability as adults," said Shah, adding that his family benefited from legal immigration. "I think it's really different and we need to segregate that group out in terms of finding a solution immediately."
He also suggested more border security that uses technology instead of a wall to better enforce borders.
Bennett said the current situation has left dreamers living in the shadows.
"We can't just leave them in never-never land," he said.
Wynes said he would like to see the dreamers remain on a path to citizenship in exchange for border security measures.
"It doesn't have to be a wall along the 2,000-mile border," he said. "I don't think that's economically feasible."
Shah told the forum audience at North Suburban Synagogue Beth El he's in favor of term limits.
"I think a maximum of six years is perfect for that," he said. All three hopefuls said they support moving the U.S. Embassy in Israel from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. Wynes, who previously worked for the American Israel Public Affairs Committee, said it could force the Palestinians to come to the bargaining table.
All three also back the recently enacted tax reforms.
Wynes called out Schneider for opposing "something that lowers taxes for 80 percent of middle class families in the 10th district."
"Every week now we're seeing corporations announce jobs and tax bill payments that they weren't making before," Shah added.
Bennett said the tax cuts "provide opportunities for people who would not have gone and tried a new business, a new restaurant, a new book store, to do that."
On the Affordable Care Act, Wynes said an important step was made recently with the repeal of the individual mandate. Substituting a tax credit system "will actually be more effective toward getting people into the marketplace and keeping costs down," he said.
But Bennett said getting rid of the mandate makes the problem worse.
"There is no way we're going to bring costs in line without talking about tort reform," he added.