Republican candidate for State Senate in the 59th District Mark Minor stopped by the office of “The Daily Register/Eldorado Daily Journal” Wednesday afternoon to respond to some comments made recently by his opponent, incumbent State Senator Gary Forby (D-59).
Republican candidate for State Senate in the 59th District Mark Minor stopped by the office of "The Daily Register/Eldorado Daily Journal" Wednesday afternoon to respond to some comments made recently by his opponent, incumbent State Senator Gary Forby (D-59).
Forby was quoted in Tuesday's page 1A article, "Forby speaks to retirees about pension reform," as saying Minor wants to make Illinois a right-to-work state, which would bar unions from making collective bargaining agreements with the state.
"I am not in favor and I will not advocate right-to-work in this state," Minor said.
Minor says he has formally challenged Forby to a debate more than once, but has not received a response.
"For 10 years he's been a sitting senator and has never taken a debate," Minor said. "If he's that strong of a voice for Southern Illinois, why won't he stand up on a stage and speak to people?"
Minor said because Forby has been unwilling to publicly debate about the issues, he set up seven town hall meetings, including one at 6:30 p.m. Thursday at the Harris-Pruett Building in Harrisburg, so people have the opportunity to question him about the issues.
"I'm willing to take their questions," Minor said. "He's not."
Minor said he is not anti-union as he has been represented by Forby, but was actually a member of the United Steelworkers before he became a pastor. His wife is also a teacher.
"I have advocated fully funding the pensions and making cuts other places," Minor said, adding that as senator he would not vote in favor of legislation altering retirees' pensions.
"A debate is an honest opportunity for people to ask questions," Minor said. "But I don't feel like he's willing to address the issues publicly with me and that genuinely concerns me."