GLEN ELLYN – Citing the need for change, Glen Ellyn Park District commissioner Jay Kinzler is running against U.S. Rep. Peter Roskam, R-Wheaton, in the March 15, 2016, Republican primary.
"There are a lot of people unhappy with the current state of affairs," Kinzler said. "They're unhappy with the current Congress."
Kinzler and Roskam will be joined in the primary race by Gerald “Jerry” Drabik of Glen Ellyn.
Kinzler, 57, also of Glen Ellyn, has been a Glen Ellyn Park District commissioner for six years, and he served on the Glen Ellyn Environmental Commission for five years.
He also is a physician and an Army Reserve lieutenant colonel.
The 6th Congressional District of Illinois covers parts of Cook, DuPage, Lake, Kane and McHenry counties. Kinzler recently launched a campaign website, kinzlerforcongress.com.
Strengthening the military and protecting the homeland is one of his main priorities.
"Our citizens shouldn't be at risk at all," Kinzler said. "We need to make sure that Americans are secure both abroad and at home."
Balancing the budget is another priority.
"We need to start living within our means," Kinzler said. "We need to start controlling our spending."
Kinzler also plans to focus on revamping or redoing the Affordable Care Act.
"ObamaCare was supposed to basically bring down everyone's insurance premiums, when in fact, what it's done is increased heath premiums for most Americans," Kinzler said. "It's actually decreased access to health care. As a physician, I've seen that firsthand."
Kinzler said the Affordable Care Act also has hurt the economy because many businesses are choosing not to expand because of all the rules and regulations associated with it.
Kinzler also believes in term limits and that those elected to the U.S. House of Representatives should only be allowed to serve a maximum of eight years and those in the U.S. Senate, a maximum of 12 years.
"Many of these incumbents have been in their positions for year after year, and it's become a career," Kinzler said. "And I don't think that's how it's meant to be. We need to get rid of the incumbents and put in some new people."
Kinzler said he knows he faces an uphill battle because of Roskam's name recognition and status as an incumbent.
"The way I see it, I am giving people a choice," he said.
This story has been updated to include Gerald “Jerry” Drabik of Glen Ellyn as a candidate in the race.