James Marter challenges 16th Congressional District’s incumbent Republican


DeKALB — James Marter thinks the 16th Congressional District needs a Republican candidate who can follow through with their promises.

The elections will take place March 20, and incumbent Adam Kinzinger will be challenged for the Republican nomination by Marter, who unsuccessfully ran against former U.S. Sen. Mark Kirk in the 2016 primary.

Marter said he will run on the same campaign promises Kinzinger has made in the past, but he will stick to the plan, as he claims Kinzinger has not.

“[Kinzinger] said he was going to be this staunch conservative, but he’s sold the voters of this district out,” Marter said. “He voted for the biggest spending bill ever in 2016 and fully funded Obama’s agenda and Obamacare despite running on the promise that he would not do that.”

Kinzinger voted yes on the Affordable Care Act, also known as Obamacare, in May of 2017. He has most recently voted to repeal the bill.

Kinzinger is in his fourth term as a member of Congress. His platform touts a balanced budget and ending the United States’ reliance on other nations for energy sources, according to his website.

He has put forth legislation like the Truth in Spending Act, which would require the U.S. Office of Management and Budget to review and report any bill from the last five to 10 years to determine if the cost of the bill is worth the regulation it provides.

Marter is running on a campaign of cuts; his aim is to have the smallest government possible. His plan is to cut the Affordable Care Act, taxes and funding for programs like Planned Parenthood. His biggest cut would be the abolishment of the Department of Education.

“I entered high school in 1978, and I’ve asked this question of voters throughout the district; does anyone think the education system is better now than it was when it was created,” Marter said. “The Department of Education can go or be completely scaled back. Let our states and local school districts handle it.”

Both candidates support President Donald Trump’s plans to limit immigration, and Kinzinger’s voting record reflects this. He has voted three times for rigid regulations and advocates for stricter punishments for undocumented immigrants, according to his website.

Alex Rader, senior political science major, said it is unclear whether enough of the base feels betrayed by Kinzinger’s actions to vote him out as an incumbent.

“Kinzinger is deserving of re-election,” Rader said. “So much of the party platform is still up for debate. Marter might have done well in the last election, but what Trump has done so far will hurt his campaign.”

Congressman Kinzinger did not return requests for comment.