Unlike his Tea Party Republican colleague Congressman Joe Walsh (IL-8th), Congressman Peter Roskam (IL-6th) is no fool. Roskam and Walsh are Tea Party birds of a feather, but Roskam has the good political sense, albeit not the good governance sense, to avoid debating a female challenger on sensitive women's health and economic issues. In a televised debate October 18, Walsh unleashed a firestorm of national opprobrium for his foolish and heartless comment that there is no medical necessity to use abortion to save a woman's life. "With modern technology and science, you can't find one instance" Walsh commented to reporters after his debate against strong women's health care advocate Tammy Duckworth.
Roskam, no doubt, refused to debate his female challenger Leslie Coolidge because he might find himself twisted in knots trying to tiptoe around his similar extreme Tea Party positions on women's healthcare and economic benefit issues. Roskam voted to eliminate funding for women's health checkups and mammogram screenings provided by Planned Parenthood, voted against the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay (for women) Act, supports employers' ability to deny their female employees contraception coverage in their healthcare plans, wants to ban a woman's right to choose in cases of rape or incest, and co-sponsored a measure to legally redefine rape to exclude statutory rape and some kinds of date rape.
Roskam willingly disrespects the 75% of new 6th District voters who would like to see what their potential new Congressman believes on the issues in public debates, to avoid the potential of drowning in the Tea Party lunacy that Joe Walsh is so prone diving into. Roskam and Walsh drink their tea from different cups. Roskam sips decaffeinated and stays mute. Walsh gulps full strength caffeine and then lets loose for all his district to hear...and cringe.