Peggy Hubbard, U.S. Senate Republican candidate profile

Her top legislative priorities include taxes and the elimination of wasteful spending.

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Peggy Hubbard, 2020 Republican primary election candidate, U.S. Senate

Peggy Hubbard, Republican primary candidate for U.S. Senate.

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Candidate profile

Peggy Hubbard

Running for: U.S. Senate

Political/civic background: Republican Election Judge, Citizen activist

Occupation: Retired IRS Analyst, Former Military, Former Law Enforcement

Education: High School, IRS and Tax Code training and certifications

Campaign website:PeggyHubbard.org

Twitter: @PeggyHubbardIL


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Please tell us about your civic work in the last two years, whether it’s legislation you have sponsored or other paid or volunteer work to improve your community.

I have served as a Republican Election Judge, helping to expose and prevent fraud in the election process. I have also been active in Illinois communities fighting for change and better living conditions for families who have been forgotten or ignored by their government. An example of this would be when I helped fight to get a giant hole repaired in East St. Louis.

What are your views on the decision by the U.S. House to impeach President Donald Trump? Has the impeachment process been fair or not? How so? If, in your view, the president should not have been impeached, would you have supported censure? Please explain.

Everyday Dick Durbin and the political elite in Washington continue with this impeachment charade is another day the issues that really matter to Illinoisans are ignored.

This process has been a farce. Our taxpayers deserve better than partisan witch hunts and campaign grandstanding. We have underfunded schools, neighborhoods being forgotten, families suffering from higher taxes and less opportunity, roads, and bridges crumbling, veterans living on our streets, and rewriting the 2016 election is what they have chosen to focus their effort? We deserve better. The 2016 election happened, and he’s our president. Let the 2020 election happen and focus on the issues that matter to our people. Focus on results that make Illinois better. I stand with President Trump, but more importantly, I stand with our people.

How would you reduce the federal budget deficit, which now stands at about $1 trillion for 2020? What changes, if any, to the U.S. tax code do you support and why?

I believe in making our tax code as fair and straightforward as possible. We should always be looking for ways to eliminate wasteful spending and prioritize spending to allow our hardworking people to keep more of their hard-earned money.

I will focus on wasteful and deficit spending. You see this on both the state and federal levels. We have residents in Illinois who are taxed to death, and as a result, we have had a max exodus in Illinois. This trend is not sustainable. We need to prioritize spending, and on the federal level, I will tackle this, and hopefully, our state government will be inspired as well. Some federal examples courtesy of Senator Paul: Our government spent $15 Million studying the effectiveness of golf equipment in Space. Our government spent $43 Million on a gas station in Afghanistan that Practically no one can use. And our government allowed $158 million of Federal School Lunch Program Funds to pay for lawn sprinklers, among other things in California. When we have veterans living on the streets, schools struggling, crumbling infrastructure, and forgotten communities, I can think of several things we should be prioritizing this spending on instead of wasting precious tax dollars. As a former IRS analyst and police officer, I’ll investigate, find, and eliminate wasteful spending, so we have more resources to help our people and plan for our future.

What changes would you like to see made to our nation’s healthcare system? Would you shore up the Affordable Care Act or work to repeal it in full? What’s your view on Medicare for All? And what should be done, if anything, to bring down the cost of prescription drugs?

I am not in favor of socialized healthcare and forcing individuals to purchase coverage they don’t want or need. Solutions are best found at the state level or in the free market. One-size-fits-all federal government policies inflate costs and hurt the quality of individual care.

We need to continue to work toward more transparency in costs and services while encouraging free-market competition to drive down the costs and increase the quality of health care for all Americans. Competition and innovations will benefit those purchasing private insurance as well as those using Medicare and Medicaid.

Improving affordability begins with increased transparency in treatment costs, increased tax incentives for Health Care Savings Accounts, open and competitive insurance markets across state lines, and true portability when moving from one job to another.

We also need to look for layers of bureaucracy that we could reform or remove. For example, the government currently has a system in place that pays more money for sicker patients. Doctors are invited to seminars where they are paid to learn how to code their patient interactions to make the patient appear as ill as possible. This process results in higher payments to the doctor and the insurance company. I am in favor of accurate information. If proper and precise coding details drive better health care, I will be in favor of that as well. The reality is merely making the patient as sick as possible on paper does not enhance the care; it only increases the payment.

I am open to all options that are respectful of our working families, taxpayers, current retirees, our most vulnerable, and future generations to be able to choose the best health care for them.

The Trump administration is awaiting a ruling from the Supreme Court as to whether it can end the DACA program — Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals — which shields young undocumented immigrants from deportation. Do you support or oppose DACA, and why? Should a path to citizenship be created for the so-called DREAMers? Please explain.

DACA and other significant programs should not be executive orders; they should be considered carefully, passed by Congress, and signed into law by the president.

Immigration is a political issue that seems to score points during elections for members of Congress on both sides, so you never really see any results for the American people.

I support legal immigration, and the hardworking immigrants in Illinois and other parts of our country who have chosen to come legally and be an asset to our economy and our country.

I firmly oppose illegal immigration and will work with our president and other members of Congress to secure our borders and keep our families safe. If this means more border patrol agents, more technology, or a physical barrier, I will fight to get it done and defend our border.

We need reforms to our legal immigration system as well. I want to explore moving toward a more merit-based approach by giving applicants credit for such things as having a trade or technical skill, advanced degrees, English fluency, and personal savings. These individuals are more likely to become assets to our local communities and further prosper in Illinois and other parts of our country. We also need to look at visa programs to ensure we are not only helping our businesses thrive, but we are protecting the American worker and family.

I support ending chain migration and the visa lottery program. I support President Trump’s proposal to give the individuals of Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals legal status. However, I oppose giving a special pathway to citizenship for these individuals. I also support ending chain migration and the visa lottery program. We have a lot of work to do, and I plan to surround myself with experts on this issue and work with others to pass some long overdue, common-sense reforms.

What are the three most important issues in your district on which the federal government can and should act?

Our people are being taxed to death; our government is spending money like it’s going out of style, and as jobs and people leave, we lose opportunities all across our state.

I will focus on wasteful and deficit spending. You see this on both the state and federal levels. We have residents in Illinois who are taxed to death, and as a result, we have had a max exodus in Illinois. This trend is not sustainable. We need to prioritize spending, and on the federal level, I will tackle this, and hopefully, our state government will be inspired as well. Some federal examples courtesy of Senator Paul: Our government spent $15 Million studying the effectiveness of golf equipment in Space. Our government spent $43 Million on a gas station in Afghanistan that Practically no one can use. And our government allowed $158 million of Federal School Lunch Program Funds to pay for lawn sprinklers, among other things in California. When we have veterans living on the streets, schools struggling, crumbling infrastructure, and forgotten communities, I can think of several things we should be prioritizing this spending on instead of wasting precious tax dollars. As a former IRS analyst and police officer, I’ll investigate, find, and eliminate wasteful spending, so we have more resources to help our people and plan for our future.

What is the biggest difference between you and your opponent(s)?

I am uniquely qualified and unafraid to take a GOP message to our inner-city black communities and the most rural parts of our state. I’m not running to be like every other Republican who has lost to Durbin in the past. I am not here to lose with grace so I can run for something else. I’m running to inspire others to join our fight for our future and win. I know what it’s like to grow up in a poverty-stricken area with gangs. I had to identify my brother, who was killed by gang violence. I know what it’s like to be broke. I know what it’s like to work multiple jobs while living paycheck to paycheck.

I’m running because our rural towns and inner cities have suffered the most under poor policies and being flat-out forgotten after elections take place. I’m running to advocate for the dignity and protection of all human life, not just for the unborn, but the victims of opioid abuse, those who fall between the cracks of the system, and all other vulnerable folks in our state. I’m running to defend our Second Amendment and the rest of the Bill of Rights. To me, this isn’t about hunting or a high-minded Constitutional debate. It’s about making sure a single mother living in the projects, surrounded by gang bangers, can defend herself and her family. I’ll be fighting every single day for the regular people who want the opportunity to live, work, and prosper in Illinois. They deserve the same opportunity at being part of the American Dream as previous generations. That means safer schools with more choices for parents and students. It also means infrastructure that isn’t about to collapse. And yes, it means access to real quality private-sector health care that they can afford. I’m running to make a change and prioritize our people again.

What action should Congress take, if any, to reduce gun violence?

We must invest in education and make mental health a priority on the state level. We must also combat the problems with crime and gang violence in Chicago and other major cities. This starts with better investments in education and incentivizing businesses to invest and bring opportunity and jobs for these people. Crime is a choice, and we must be tough on crime, but we must also help provide these forgotten communities a better option if we hope to break the mold and set a better track for the future.

I believe in background checks and reasonable laws that do not impede the rights of law-abiding citizens. I’m running to defend our Second Amendment and the rest of the Bill of Rights. To me, this isn’t about hunting or a high-minded Constitutional debate. It’s about making sure a single mother living in the projects, surrounded by gang bangers, can defend herself and her family.

Is climate change real? Is it significantly man-made? Is it a threat to humankind? What if anything should Congress and the federal government do about it?

I do not believe in the effects and threats of human-made climate change the left spews out, but whether you believe in the effects of human-made climate change or not, the free market continues to address and come up with more efficient ways to do things than the government. Since scientists started studying climate change, capitalist countries have reduced their carbon emissions more than anyone else. If we cut all of our emissions in the U.S. to zero, we would only reduce things globally by around 15%. That does nothing but cost American jobs and increase utilities on our families.

We need to empower local governments, individuals, and communities to do what’s best for their area to help our environment. We also need to work with other countries who are willing to honor agreements and lower their emissions, instead of merely signing them as a symbolic gesture. When our country pays the Lion’s share and is the only serious one it does nothing but hurt our taxpayers and our economy. If a deal is honest and fair, I’ll consider it, but my priority is the American people and our families who already struggle with high taxes and utility bills.

What should Congress do to ensure the solvency of Social Security and Medicare?

I do not believe in changing Social Security or Medicare for anyone at or near retirement age. They paid in their entire life with a promise from our government, and we must honor that. However, we must be realistic with the insolvency we will face if we do nothing. I don’t have all the answers, nor will I pretend I do. Some ideas from the Heritage Foundation I have been reading up on that I plan to explore further are:

1. Increasing Social Security’s retirement age to reflect individuals’ longer life spans

2. Shifting toward a flat anti-poverty benefit to better align resources with the individuals’ needs and help to prevent more seniors from living in poverty.

3. Use the chained consumer price index (CPI) for Social Security’s benefit calculations to provide a better adjustment for inflation.

4. Reduce the payroll tax to give workers more choice in deciding how to spend or save their earnings.

5. Decreasing taxpayer subsidies for higher-income earners who are not dependent on Social Security or Medicare

These programs were created to be safety nets for people but have grown too large and will be insolvent for future generations. We need to transition to a better plan that keeps the promise for those at or near retirement age but provides necessary reforms to help those who need it the most and allows our future generations to be able to save, invest, and prosper in Illinois.

When it comes to health care, we need to continue to work toward more transparency in costs and services while encouraging free-market competition to drive down the costs and increase the quality of health care for all Americans. Competition and innovations will benefit those purchasing private insurance as well as those using Medicaid and Medicare. However, I’m open to all options that are respectful of our working families, taxpayers, current retirees, our most vulnerable, and future generations to be able to choose the best health care for them.

What should Congress do to address the student loan crisis? Would you use the word “crisis”?

College isn’t for everyone, and we need to stop pushing everyone to go to college. Many technical schools and skill labor jobs provide a great living. We also need to quit incentivizing colleges to increase costs of tuition and fees because they think the taxpayers will foot the bill.

I feel for the many students and families who are hurting with these payments. This debt hurts upward mobility and investments in our economy. There are several ideas I would like to explore, but simply eliminating debt will do nothing but put a bandaid on a bullet hole. We need to address the problem itself, and that is the inflated cost.

What should our nation’s relationship be with Russia?

We should maintain a level of diplomacy with Russia that would benefit the American people, improve our economy, and ensure national security for our people and our allies.

What’s your view on the use of tariffs in international commerce? Has President Trump imposed tariffs properly and effectively? Please explain.

China has been stealing intellectual property from the United States that has cost our country billions of dollars. I believe in free, but for this to work, it must be negotiated and upheld fairly. While I believe a tariff is a tax on the American consumer and hurts in the short-term, I trust our president to continue negotiating better trade deals that will help our economy and benefit the American worker in the long run. As a Senator, I will carefully review all information with these deals to ensure our workers, businesses, and future is protected.

Does the United States have a responsibility to promote democracy in other countries? Please explain.

Our economic strength, our military that is second to none, our love of freedom, and our people separate us from the rest of the world. I am a firm believer in peace through strength, but that only works if you are willing to hold your word and show strength when necessary. We should always help our allies and protect American interests abroad. However, I believe any decision to send troops to a foreign country should be made carefully and with a precise plan to accomplish the mission and come home. Many people who will vote in this election have never known a year without conflict; I pray for peace so we can change that and start prioritizing our people by building up our country and putting Illinoisans and Americans first.

What should Congress do to limit the proliferation of nuclear arms?

Foreign policy is not something to be negotiated between 535 people and foreign leaders, this is why we elect a President. While the input of Congress is important, our job is not to impede or interfere with negotiations, but to support our chief negotiators and ensure and ratify deals and agreements that benefit and keep the American people safe.

Please list all relatives on public or campaign payrolls and their jobs on those payrolls.

My husband works is a decorated police officer who has earned several awards, including a Medal of Valor.

What historical figure from Illinois, other than Abraham Lincoln (because everybody’s big on Abe), do you most admire or draw inspiration from? Please explain.

Ronald Reagan. Like me, he was a former Democrat who saw the light and worked to inspire others to believe in and invest in the American dream. To me, the American dream is being able to live comfortably and watching your kids and grandkids grow up in your backyard, not just on Facebook. We have a lot of people leaving our state right now. As our children, grandchildren, family, and friends leave Illinois because of high taxes and low opportunity.

Like Reagan, I’ll work to find common-sense solutions to get government out of the way so businesses can invest, grow, and provide jobs and opportunities to our people in Illinois. I believe our state and the American dream is worth fighting for as we seek to give people a reason to stay and invest in Illinois.

What’s your favorite TV, streaming or web-based show of all time. Why?

Scandal is one of my favorite shows. I referenced this show when giving my speech at Republican Day in Springfield. They have a saying in the show, “are we gladiators or are we bitches?” If Republican candidates like myself are going to inspire and motivate people to win statewide in Illinois again, we must be unafraid to fight like Gladiators for our people

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