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Tribune backs Truax over Oberweis to challenge Durbin in Senate

Today the Chicago Tribune endorsed political newcomer Doug Truax in the U.S. Senate Republican primary race, saying he was the best positioned to oust U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin, D-Ill.

It’s a major snub to ice cream mogul and state Sen. Jim Oberweis who was elected to his position in 2012 after making five failed runs for higher office.

“Conventional wisdom doesn’t dictate how dyspeptic voters will treat a profoundly partisan Democrat who helped lead passage of Obamacare — and who’s in his 32nd year in Congress,” the Tribune wrote.

“Oberweis has more name recognition and money than does Truax. If Republicans don’t look deeper, those variables could determine this race. But with one eye on the issues that confront voters and another on Illinois’ imperiled future, the Tribune today endorses Doug Truax.”

If the Republican Party is to outgrow its loss of stature in Illinois, it needs to recruit and promote candidates who are more like Truax. At 43 he’s a West Point graduate, a former Army Ranger and captain, and majority owner of a small Oak Brook firm that helps employers address the costs of their health care, retirement and other benefits programs.Truax projects confidence in what a growth-oriented federal agenda could accomplish: He stresses that without more vibrant economic activity, America won’t solve chronic joblessness. He impresses us with smart ideas for rescuing entitlement programs, curbing federal tax loopholes, and empowering states to expand school choice: “I favor charter schools and maximum flexibility for parents and students to escape bad schools and a cycle of poverty.” And as a health insurance consultant, Truax offers fresh and detailed proposals for accomplishing what Obamacare cannot: affordably providing good coverage to Americans with pre-existing conditions.

“I’m pleased that the Chicago Tribune sees the race as I do — a choice between the past and future of the Republican Party and a referendum on the direction we want to take Illinois and America,” Truax said.