JOLIET – Businessman Chris Balkema announced his candidacy for Congress in the 11th Congressional District today. Balkema joins State Rep. Darlene Senger and radio personality Ian Bayne in the GOP primary, which will determine which one gets to challenge incumbent Democrat Congressman Bill Foster.
“America’s financial situation is deteriorating quickly," said Balkema. "Just last Friday, the jobs report showed that the last time this much of America's labor force had given up on finding good-paying jobs was in 1978 during the Carter years."
A manager at Caterpillar and a Grundy County Board member, Balkema said he's setting his career aside "to go work for the people" of the 11th Congressional District.
"There is a lack of courage in Washington to get the job done – I will change that,” Balkema said in a press release. “We need to roll up our sleeves across party lines and get to work.”
The press release went on: “I know how to create jobs and I know how to streamline bureaucracy. I will lead us past the politics and bring people together to deliver the solutions needed to fire up our nation’s economic engine. We need a real recovery that allows the talented people of the 11 District to put their skills to work,” said Balkema. “It is a matter of courage. Courage to bring the sides together and develop a 2 page bill with a laser focus on a solution instead of a 2,000 page bill that goes nowhere.”
Balkema noted, "With a 38% corporate tax rate and a litany of burdensome government regulations, this country is now the most expensive place on the planet to operate a business. We must replace Obamacare with actual healthcare reform that encourages competition in the marketplace and across state lines while lowering healthcare costs for families, seniors and businesses,” he said. “We have so much untapped potential and creativity in this country just waiting to be unleashed – if we just get the government out of the way.”
“We have an opportunity to see a jobs explosion, in the next few years, that will dwarf the manufacturing boom thatAmerica experienced over 50 years ago – but only if we move forward and implement the solutions necessary. I owe it to my country to lead and deliver these results,” said Balkema.
Balkema is married and has two sons Luke (10) and Max (8). He attends The Village Christian Church in Minooka and is a member of the Grundy County Chamber of Commerce and the Minooka Lions Club.