10 months, 3 weeks ago by Denise Donley
Quincy Congressional candidate says congress spends too much time raising money to get re-elected
A Quincy man wants to have a voice in the U.S. Congress.
Rob Mellon, a 42-year-old Army veteran and history teacher at Quincy High School, plans to run for Congress in the 18th District. The incumbent is Republican Aaron Schock of Peoria.
Mellon, a Democrat, was born and raised in Quincy. After his Army service, he and his family came home. Mellon said he’s always felt like the Quincy area is ignored.
“I just don’t think that the political system or the economic system is working for the average Quincyan,” he said.
Mellon urged residents to take a look at how Congress functions today.
“In Congressman Schock’s case, he spends 75% of his day raising money. He makes four or five plane trips, calling it constituent services, but in reality what he is doing is raising money,” said Mellon. “It’s not just one party that is guilty in this, but in Schock’s case, he’s probably one of the worst. He’s been brought up on ethics violations for how he’s used campaign money.”
Mellon said he will not function like Congressman Schock, especially in regards to raising campaign money.
“I understand that there is need for fundraising, but that should pretty much end at the end of the campaign. You shouldn’t continue the campaign throughout your time in office. That time should be spent on constituents and not who has the checkbook,” said Mellon. “I can change the way the system works because it’s part of my personal conduct. Now in terms of the greater problems, those are bigger issues that we all have to work together to accomplish.”
While looking at the gerrymandered districts throughout the U.S., Mellon noted out of the 435 Congress seats, 30-35 are actually contested.
“That means 400 of the seats have been drawn to a specific advantage. In Illinois, it’s drawn in the Democrats advantage. No matter who does it, it’s absolutely wrong. A lot of Democrats do not agree with me and I’m not concerned with that either. If it’s wrong, it’s wrong. I fully support Illinois changing the law to end that system to make it fair so our citizens are not disenfranchised. It needs to change.”
Mellon will go up against Darrel Miller of Danvers, Illinois in the March 18 primary.