PLAINFIELD - Will County women are ramping up to toss Democrat incumbent Congressman Bill Foster in November. While many haven't gotten involved in politics before, they're ready to stick their toes in to send State Rep. Darlene Senger (R-Naperville) to D.C. to represent them in 2015.
"The Republicans have no war on women," RNC Secretary Demetra DeMonte told the crowd gathered at the popular Nevins Brewing Company in Plainfield Wednesday night. "I say it's a phony war on women, and that Republicans are fighting a real war FOR women. Would I be a part of a war on women? Are you kidding?"
In her comments, Senger emphasized her campaign's talking points of "More Jobs, Less Waste, Better Future," - all things both men and women are concerned about this election cycle.
Among the women in the audience were several local township trustees, library board members and candidates for office in November.
"How does someone get started in helping get Darlene elected? Start by talking to family and friends," said Marge Bonuchi, Plainfield Township trustee and former Plainfield Township GOP chairman.
"Sign up to follow Darlene's Facebook page and Twitter," another said.
"I'm a big fan of parades," said RNC Committeewoman Demetra DeMonte. "Help Darlene get a big group together to march in parades this weekend."
Senger, who's been a state representative since January 2009, told the group of women calling themselves "Women for Senger" that she has a tough battle ahead, but is confident she can win in November.
"I've had tough campaign in the past, fighting Speaker Madigan, and we've won," she said. "We're moving up in the polls and the National Republican Congressional Committee is paying attention. We're now on the radar and with voter's negative attitude towards incumbents, we're very hopeful to win in November."
While that may be typical campaign excitement ratcheting, campaign insider said Wednesday night that Senger was within four points of incumbent Foster, and that Foster's not been a visible presence in Will County.
Over the past few election cycles, conservatives in Will County have won township and county seats, and more and more Democrat office holders are facing challenges from Republicans.
Two candidates at the Senger for Women rally hope the enthusiasm moves down the ballot to their state representative races.
Diane Harris, who is challenging State Rep. Larry Walsh Jr in the 86th House District, was happy that earlier in the day, her campaign won a Democrat petition challenge, and she was one step closer to being on the November ballot. Walsh is Will County Board President Larry Walsh's son.
"We're happy the Democrats are being challenged, and that the Republicans are growing in Will County," Harris said.
Yvonne Bolton, challenging incumbent Democrat Natalie Manley in the 98th District, was also proud of being a Will County Republican on the November ballot.
"We're benefitting from the Republicans higher up on the ballot, like Darlene and Bruce Rauner," she said. "It won't be easy, but we're working hard to get more Will County Republicans elected in the Illinois House, too."
But it all really comes down to grassroots activity, and the Will County rally was encouraging to Senger.
“This is a great grassroots group that has been assembled to help my campaign. This group believes that we deserve a better voice in Washington and are ready to get to work to make that happen” said Senger. “The support people have shown is truly humbling, and together we will work to change Washington.”