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Wednesday, September 20, 2006

US Chamber Endorsement Tour Press Coverage

Zinga backs tax cuts to spur jobs
Wednesday, September 20, 2006

By Doug Wilson
Herald-Whig Senior Writer

Andrea Zinga says the federal government needs to reduce or keep taxes low to promote jobs and economic prosperity. During a news conference in Quincy this morning, Zinga accepted the support of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and outlined her vision of being pro-jobs and pro-business. Zinga is the Republican nominee for the 17th District House seat held by U.S. Rep. Lane Evans, D-Rock Island.

"Three presidents in my lifetime have cut taxes — Kennedy, Reagan, and of course, Bush," Zinga said. "And when they cut taxes ... that got the economy humming."
Three major legislative goals are supported by Zinga and the chamber. She wants to make the Bush tax cuts permanent, eliminate the inheritance tax, and put a cap on medical malpractice awards and other monetary judgments.

Melanie Bassett of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce said Zinga is on the right side of several important issues for business. She said Zinga would support business if elected to Congress.

Glen Bemis of Sisbro Inc. hosted the news conference and said trucking firms such as his know how much damage can be done by bad legislation. Illinois lawmakers increased taxes and fees on truckers in 2003 and have driven many truckers out of the state.

"Under Rod Blagojevich, ... the trucking industry is one of the hardest hit in the state," Zinga said.
Zinga will face Democrat nominee Phil Hare in the November election.

Tuesday, September 19, 2006

Signs, Signs, Everywhere Signs

SIGN ALERT!

If you have a "Zinga for Congress" sign in your garage, basement or shed--THE TIME HAS COME. Please post it in your yard!

Note to those who have been defacing and stealing our 4 x 8 signs in the Quad Cities: it's obviously an orchestrated effort.

The good people of the QC area don't condone that kind of thing from either party, in any election. So the net effect of your hard work and staying up nights to sneak around playing dirty has been this: an outpouring of interest from folks who want to take signs and give money for MORE signs. We have ordered more large signs and will soon have them in the ground.

Thank you--ALL--for your support.

Andrea

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

Profiling

I believe,as I always have, that the issues which TOUCH the residents of the 17th District are those which affect them most.

Nothing is more immediate to each one of us than staying safe and keeping the peace--for ourselves, our families, our nation.

That is, also, the primary purpose of government...
to "insure domestic tranquility"
to "provide for the common defense"
to "promote the general welfare..."
It's right there, in the short Preamble to the U.S. Constitution. (Seems the founders instinctively knew the rule that is STILL used in journalism: "tell em, tell em again, and tell em a 3rd time!") It's pretty darned clear what government is supposed to do.

This Monday September 11--the 5th anniversary of 9/11--we set out on a district-wide tour to distribute free yard signs--emblazoned with the flag and the words "America Stands United" on one side and "We Won't Forget" on the other.

These signs came to us from a National Guardsman and true patriot who purchased them, in boxes and without any definite purpose in mind, right after 9/11. He chose this 5th anniversary (5 YEARS WITHOUT A REPEAT ATTACK ON AMERICAN SOIL) to share them with us so we could share them with our fellow Americans around the 17th
District.

(By the way, our campaign staff and field staff include a former National Guardsman, a Marine, and the proud papa of a recent Air Force boot camp graduate. We take this seriously!)

At each stop but one a group of interested citizens was there to greet our campaign, and the signs flew out the door. I used the occasion to talk in each of seven cities about national security and my priorities for assuring that we "secure the blessings of liberty for ourselves and our posterity." (The Preamble again.)

Several of those stops were at municipal fire stations. One of those fire stations was in Springfield, where I was asked by the media about whether I would profile Mideastern men in airports.

Look, folks, it's pretty simple: when you are trying to avoid a murderous hijacking, you look closest at the triggers and signs that you know are most likely, statistically, to lead to that eventuality. It's tragic but true that after 20 years of warnings of war punctuated by sporadic outrages like the Cole bombing, the bombing of the Marine barracks in Beirut and the lst attempt on the World Trade Center in New York, we do have patterns.

When I say profiling doesn't bother me, I refer specifically to profiling in airports. And I do not refer to profiling by physical features or name, UNLESS that
is preceded by some pretty powerful triggers: a one-way ticket, for instance, in company with cash payment; a history of visits to terrorist havens or cells or camps, and so on. Maybe also in company with OTHER travelers who have ALSO bought one-way tickets with cash and a history of visits to terrorist havens etc.

The situation as it exists now in this country is this: if an airline begins to see that SEVERAL are scheduled to fly whose presence and particulars send up red flags, that airline has a choice. Intensively screen all the questionable would-be passengers, and face hefty fines from the federal Department of Transportation's Civil Liberties division for picking on one class of people; or go ahead and fly and hope for the best.

So what we have are government lawyers making it tough for the airlines to screen, say, a group of passengers. We erred in my prepared remarks when we thought it was no more than two--but the substance is the same. "Ah ah ah!" the lawyers warn. "You are in danger of discriminating based on ethnicity, and we can sue."

And sue they have. The American government sued American Airlines, on that very basis, to the tune of millions of dollars, in the case of 10 different passengers who, because of the conundrum this creates for the airlines, were finally just kept off the flight: not allowed to board. In the case of the 11th defendant, no lawsuit resulted. Because THAT guy American Airlines kept off the plane was Richard Reid. Of course we all know what he did with his shoe when he made it onto a subsequent flight.

(Worth noting that the warning profiles which have evolved do NOT depend on ethnicity. They tagged him and he was no way Middle Eastern.)

I don't know about you, but I am more interested in defending America than in coddling passengers. Check that--yes, I DO know. Most Americans, most airline passengers, ARE WILLING to put up with longer and more intensive security procedures in exchange for a flight that actually makes it to its destination in one piece. The American people understand that in order to preserve liberty, we must emphasize security. They also value their skins and their souls and want to keep them around as long as possible.

A reporter asked me if I would have, therefore, interned the Japanese in World War Two. That really doesn't merit a response. This is not about interning. It isn't about torture. It isn't about "racial profiling"--stopping someone driving down the street just because your skin is a particular color.

(If you really want to be technical, the Middle East is a place, not a race.)

What then IS this about? It's about not turning your flight to New York or London into a WMD.

And if, as a side benefit, we could use a little common sense and not screen babies, that might be nice.

However, if you have to search the babies, do it. They aren't going to mind, most like--and most Americans don't mind the INTENT either--although few of us have much patience for such things. We like sensible. And more importantly still, most Americans would not strap explosives on their kids or use them as human shields or decoys. It's our terrorist enemies, in a new kind of war, who do that.

I can of course not speak for them, but I'm willing to bet that Middle Eastern men with no ill intent on their minds don't object to efforts to keep them safe on a plane either. Perhaps I'm wrong--but then, plenty of men of middle Eastern descent ARE Americans, the majority of whom understand the importance of increasing security in order to safeguard liberty.

A sad fact, but true. We are in a War of Terror that could take decades in many places to stamp out, and which certainly redefines "war" as we have ever known it.

If I were honored enough to be elected your Representative in Congress, I would try to understand terrorists, but not for the purpose of coddling them. I would want to know all I could about them for one reason and one reason only: to keep you safe.

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

District Tour Press Coverage

Zinga: I'll focus on terror fight

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

By Doug Wilson, Quincy Herald Whig

Andrea Zinga believes Americans are forgetting the lessons of Sept. 11, 2001.

During a news conference Monday at Quincy's Central Fire Station, Zinga, the Republican candidate for the 17th District congressional seat, pledged to support keeping the peace, keeping the United States strong and working toward energy independence.

"If I'm elected, I won't focus on understanding terrorists," Zinga said. "I'll focus on defending America."

Zinga said that since the U.S. was attacked by terrorists, she has been astonished to hear several politicians talk about withdrawing from the fight with al-Qaeda, the insurgents in Iraq and Afghanistan or other hot spots where Islamic fascists are trying to squelch freedom.

Zinga believes that many people want to coddle the enemy. Others fight against giving the government new powers that help track terrorists or prevent attacks. She does not want to see foolish decisions made in airport security, for example, to appear politically correct. Zinga said profiling at airports would make more sense than searching grandmothers and babies.

Zinga also highlighted the nation's dependence on foreign oil as part of her national security concerns. She said she wants to see ethanol, biodiesel and other alternative fuels make the nation energy independent within 10 years, adding that coal reserves in Illinois also need to be developed.

If elected, Zinga pledged to support drilling for oil on Alaska's North Slope and licensing of new refineries and other measures that would bring greater energy reserves into play.

Zinga said her opponent in the race for Congress, Democrat Phil Hare, has talked about bringing oil industry officials in for congressional hearings on their profits during the past year. She said it would be better to hold hearings on the threats represented by the nuclear ambitions of Iran and North Korea.

Hare has countered with a suggestion that Zinga return a campaign contribution from ExxonMobil and promise not to accept any more money from oil companies.

Comments on Terrorism

Monday is the 5th anniversary of 9/11, and between
then and now, we’re distributing these to anyone in our area who wants one. The man who bought these did so right after 9-11, and has brought them to us now because he wanted to share them-- because a sign like this enables us ALL to share our beliefs, hopes and dreams for America.

We have 12-hundred of these and folks are taking them and putting them up. After this news conference we will be taking signs to Moline, East Moline, Rock Island and Milan.

Then we’re going around the District. We’re giving a lot of these signs to area fire departments, because what images come first to mind from that awful day but images of the men and women who were first responders.

As you can see, the sign says “We won’t forget.”

I think we have, though……I think we have.

Think back to that day—where you were—how you felt.

Think back to the state of the United States. We were at peace—weren’t fighting anybody! Exactly as some say we should be today.

The terrible problem is: we weren’t REALLY at peace. We only thought so. A large and destructive force was
at work: had been at work for at least 20 years.


You know, our country has mostly desired to be left alone. Expand our borders back when we were a growing nation, sure;but unlike England, we haven’t tried so much to colonize. We certainly haven’t tried to conquer the world.

But, and here’s a REAL important point: when others have tried to conquer the world including us, then the best and the bravest of us have shouldered arms and gone off around the world to assure that others-- and WE-- stay free.

It’s an important distinction: we just want to stay free. We don’t want to make war. We want to keep peace…

We’re not being allowed to do that. For the past 20 years, Islamic fascists have been signaling to us that they are ready to be Conquerors of the murdering kind. They’ve been telling us they’re at war with us, punctuating their claims with sporadic outrages: the Cole bombing, the bombing of the Marine
Barracks in Beirut, and the first try at bombing the World Trade Center—back in 1993. It’s a movement bent on dominating much of the world and subjugating its peoples.

Our country, as we prefer, went about our business these last 20 years, regarding them as a bunch of hotheads, hoping to let our criminal justice system deal with the fallout.

The result—September 11th.

For almost two decades we refused to take them seriously. We would not respond in kind to their provocations.

So they brought the war to us.
_____________

I listen in amazement as some who style themselves a
“peace movement”, argue that we should withdraw from this war.

It amazes me when people talk about Iraq, Iran, al Quaeda, Hezbollah and other terrorist havens as if they were separate and isolated entities.

The free world blundered into World War II because nobody would act to stop the rise of Hitler and Company when their intentions were obvious and could have been stopped at relatively little cost.

Then—Pearl Harbor and reality and we went in, and we knew we could not pick and choose whether we fought ONLY the Japanese, or the Germans, or the Italians. We knew that it was ONE EVIL fought on different fronts—and that it must be defeated entirely.

That’s the core of where we are today. We can’t withdraw from a war we didn’t make, but is being made on us. We can only change the front.

In World War ONE, a popular song was titled “Over There.” That’s where they kept World War One. That’s where the Greatest Generation kept World War Two. That’s where we have to keep this thing today—over there.
And, please God, we will arrive at this coming Monday as a 5-year mark of NO MORE ATTACKS HERE…

Now we can withdraw into ourselves completely, but the aggressors will not be going to leave us in peace.
I think in one form or another this could be with us for decades. In fact this struggle is likely to define the 21st century just as the struggle against totalitarian ideologies defined the 20th.

You deserve to know where your U.S. Representative stands on our vital security issues. So let me briefly list what my priorities will be.

I’ve talked a lot about my commitment to achieving energy independence within the next 10 years. That relates to our economy, of course; but it relates just as much to our national security. In today’s world, oil is gold; and the Mideast controls that black gold. We’re financing the terrorists through our dependence on foreign oil.

Half measures won’t solve the problem. I support expanding our Energy Policy. I support growing corn and beans and building plants and developing renewable fuels like ethanol and bio-diesel. I support developing liquefied coal technologies and mining and processing in the southern part of the 17th to create jobs AND new forms of energy. I support SAFE drilling offshore and in ANWR. I support alternative energy sources: hydrogen, wind, solar and nuclear power. I support whatever helps make SAND the most valuable export the Middle East has to offer.

We’ve seen a drop in gas prices lately, in part because summer’s winding down. It has MORE to do with a major new find in the U.S. Gulf that is expected to ultimately produce 400,000 barrels of oil a day. We need more finds like that, not fewer. We can’t let lower gas prices cause us to forget. And while my opponent blusters about hauling the big oil companies before Congress for hearings, I say let the oil companies, like any other business, re-invest their profits in making us more energy independent. Because they WILL, if we facilitate it. ANY good business re-invests profits—that’s how you get MORE profits.

Let’s hold those Congressional hearings instead on the scale of the threat being posed to us today by IRAN and by North Korea. Many believe a weak America in Iraq will be unable to stop Iran. And Iran is, also, a potentially life-and-death situation.

On matters of security, I want a bill in the House to close our borders. And let’s put an immediate halt to procedures that make life easier for the terrorists and harder for Americans. Profiling terrorist types at airport checkpoints doesn’t bother me: grandmothers and babies aren’t likely to blow up a plane. Our airline security personnel shouldn’t have to worry about facing discrimination suits for doing their job.

In times of war, enemy communications have always been intercepted and scrutinized. Our nation’s founders gave great autonomy in that area to the President and to Congress—not to the courts. The primary objective of the President and Congress is to protect American citizens, not to coddle the enemy. Our elegant, excellent system of checks and balances will strike the right balance between liberty and security. Right now, to protect liberty, we must emphasize security.

We have no aggressive ambitions. We attacked no one. We were attacked.

We said we would not forget. If you send me to Congress, I will not focus on understanding the terrorists. I will focus on defending America. Our job is to keep the front of this war they made in THEIR part of the world rather than ours, and to end either with their utter defeat or when they demonstrate in actions and words their willingness to live in peace.

“United we stand?” WE WILL NEVER FORGET.

Monday, September 04, 2006

Those Red Kettles

Labor Day weekend is a busy one for any dedicated politician--AND for the many people from all walks of life who help toward the goal of winning and serving.

We in the Zinga for Congress campaign have some wonderful ones!

More on the weekend a little later, but since it's on my mind I want to tell you about a holiday experience that you just don't have every day.

The Salvation Army in the Quad City area has been doing a stellar job lately of presenting a fall concert of praise, and last night (9/3/06) snagged the #1 Christian rock group in the nation, "Casting Crowns", to appear in Davenport's Leclaire Park before a crowd of 8 to 10 thousand.

As a long-time member of the Salvation Army's Advisory Board, my hat is off to ALL the fine staff there--exciting things are happening every day!--but especially to Captain David Luft, and to Development Director Kathryn Bohn. You saw Kathryn's bio detailed in The Dispatch lately--she was the classy lady holding the beautiful blue flowers. This woman thinks big, and as so often happens, gets BIG results!

Having dodged rain already yesterday in Bardolph, Macomb, Nauvoo, Burnside, and Colchester, I was thinking, last night backstage at the LeClaire Park bandshell, that we may have been under the only patch of blue sky in the Midwest! It was trying to rain as people queued up three blocks back from the entry gates, snaking down the length of the old Freight House. But, come on now--when thousands of God-fearing people gather to praise Him, amazing things happen. Faith is such a powerful thing that it didn't even rain when a band sang "Let the Rain Pour Down"!

My little role in all this grandeur was to testify on the subject of bell-ringing.
You know, "the red kettles." Chuck and I have been doing that as our Christmastime offering for some years now. And so let me tell you what I said:

The Salvation Army is one of the most recognized names in the world. After Katrina, when we went down to the Gulf Coast to report (for Channel 8) on what Quad Citians and Quincians were doing to help, we found the Salvation Army everywhere--in downtown New Orleans, for instance, where almost NO one else was allowed to be. They served up 25,000 meals a day during those early weeks.

But the Salvation Army also does tremendous good right here at home, and your dollars and cents dropped into those red kettles at the holidays make up more than a THIRD of the local Army's operating budget.

Now, it may not be the most tempting thing in the world to volunteer to stand in 20-below weather (rarely) and stay in one spot ringing a bell: "Ding-ding, ding-ding."

But you can be as anonymous--or as attention-getting--as you choose. You can pull your hood around your face and just stand there and ring. Or, conversely, you can sing, dance, show off your dog's tricks, play the xylophone: it all brings people to the kettles. (We discovered that people will pay you NOT to sing, ha!)

I drag my husband along, as we women often do. He was pulling back, at first. (Read on.) You can also go with friends, grandkids, your parrot, your church group, your club. The more the merrier!

And as you stand there, the most surprising thing happens. People approach with money for the kettle. They stop in their tracks on a busy day at the holidays or a busy night hustling children into a Christmas concert, and dig in the cold for a bill or some change. They smile. You smile. Pretty soon you are feeling GOOD.

And the BEST part is when a parent, grandparent or other adult encourages a CHILD to give. They come shyly up with a few pennies in their little fists. Sometimes they have to stand on tiptoe to reach the bucket, and sometimes it is a struggle for them to get the coins in the hole; but someone usually helps, and then they will smile or grin and run pell-mell or walk carefully and proudly back to the grownups in their life.

Eventually, whatever your mood or your problems when you arrived, it always happens: even if you're turning numb on the outside, you're ANYTHING BUT on the inside. That car heater feels mighty good when your shift is up, and you know what? SO DO YOU.

(And by the way: I've rung the bell in Florida too. It felt weird to be standing there in the sunshine in shorts manning the Red Kettle, but it led to the same results!)

THANK YOU to each of you who has led a child to the gift of giving!

THANK YOU to each of you who knows that gift: who knows that from small efforts, come mighty results for the benefit of many.

THANK YOU to the people of our generous nation.

THANK YOU to the Salvation Army for its wise and efficient use of those bills and coins.

10,000 people in LeClaire Park last night. If each one would ring a bell for the Salvation Army for ONE HOUR, that would be 10,000 hours; or 250 40-hour weeks; or put another way, FIVE YEARS worth of bell-ringing. Think what we could do with that!

Dark Day

And it was, literally, a dark day...one of those hanging-gray days we've been having a lot of lately. It was just one week ago and we were zipping through Monmouth in the schoolbus-yellow campaign car that you've been seeing for some months now.

Husband Chuck is a professional videographer and can detect smoke before a detector does, but in this case we all saw it--billows of smoke rolling from the Wells pet food factory over by the railroad tracks in the southeast part of town.

We happened to be among the very first on the scene after the emergency crews; and while Chuck rolled tape, assistant Kate Johnson and I watched in horror as the smoke got blacker and the column climbed higher, and distinctly heard explosions while studying a propane tank sitting dangerously near the warehouse.

Before very long, knots of people formed--hard-working people with anxious eyes, some of whom worked or had once worked or had wanted to work at the plant.

And very soon after that, a sweep began to move people back, one block at a time, out of the danger of that propane tank blowing or who knew what else happening.

I asked if I could help and a couple of women--apparently civilians, but working with admirable calm and authority-- suggested I evacuate houses. So I knocked on a few doors and gave a few families the word before it became obvious that many others were doing an effective job of getting people to safety.

From then on, it was just watch and see. By the end of the day, when Kate and I had returned to pick up Chuck, there was that startling stretch of bare sky where a building had been. No fatalities, praise God; although once again some brave firefighters had had to be treated for heat exhaustion. Stand and gaze at an inferno like that, and be once again grateful that there are men and women trained to head into it and tame it to keep us safe.

What made me feel sick as I watched was the thought that there went more jobs. We have lost so many in the 17th District: why should this happen here?

As it turned out, 75 people work at the plant; but then that wonderful American resolve kicked in. The company has vowed to continue, stronger than ever. And the employees have been working this past week to clean the place up.

It's as true in the workplace as it is in making laws and building up the District: pull together, put shoulder to the wheel, and good things happen: "Together, WE CAN."