Champaign, IL – Tonight, in a debate hosted by Illinois Public Media, Nikki Budzinski created a clear contrast between her and Regan Deering on defining issues for the campaign like women’s reproductive choice and protecting seniors from rising costs
On these key issues, Budzinski made the following contrasts:
On choice, Budzinski said:
“Choice is a fundamental difference between my opponent and I, for sure. I don’t believe that the women of the 13th congressional district believe that my opponent would not vote in support of a national abortion ban when she said she was thrilled when Roe vs. Wade was overturned.
I have been consistently throughout my life very supportive of choice. It’s a woman’s choice between her doctor and herself as to what she does with her body, and I think that freedom should remain with that woman. I trust women to make that decision and I’ll be supporting that in Congress.”
On protecting seniors:
“I am very concerned about seniors living on fixed incomes right now with rising costs. We hosted actually in Springfield, a roundtable on insulin. And I heard the story of a woman named Mary in Springfield and how she’s paying not just for insulin and the exorbitant costs of insulin, but also chemotherapy treatment at the same time. Thousands of dollars for a senior that’s living on fixed incomes, is unsustainable. I want to go to Congress to fight to make sure that we are supporting social security and Medicare.
My opponent is supported by Republicans that have already put out a manifesto saying if they take control of Congress, they’re going to roll back the provision that allows for Medicare to negotiate for lower drug prices. That’s helping seniors put money back in their pockets. It was also Republicans in Congress the same that are Republicans that are supporting my opponent, that when Democrats wanted to cap the cost of insulin for not just seniors, but for everyone, they stopped that in the United States Senate, those are the kinds of things that I would want to be fighting for.
For our seniors that are living on fixed incomes and really struggling, we should be capping the cost of insulin when vial of insulin costs less than $3 to produce, and we’re capping it at 35. That should be plenty of money for big pharmaceutical companies to make a profit. This shouldn’t be about profits in the skyrocketing profits that pharmaceutical companies are making right now. This should be about the seniors of central and southern Illinois that are struggling on fixed incomes, and how they can keep more of the money that they have earned.”
Nikki Budzinski is a labor activist, former Chief of Staff at the Office of Management and Budget in the Biden Administration and Senior Advisor to Governor JB Pritzker. Born in Peoria, Illinois, she’s the granddaughter of a union painter and public-school teachers. Nikki has over ten years’ experience in the labor movement, working for the United Food and Commercial Workers Union and International Association of Fire Fighters.