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Six Republicans running to battle Melissa Bean in 8th Congressional
By Russell Lissau | Daily Herald Staff

Dirk Beveridge


Chris Geissler


Greg Jacobs


John Dawson,


Joe Walsh


Maria Rodriguez


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Published: 1/31/2010 12:02 AM

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Six Republicans are running in the Feb. 2 primary for the right to challenge Democratic U.S. Rep. Melissa Bean in the suburban 8th District.

The GOP hopefuls are: Dirk Beveridge of Barrington, John Dawson of Barrington, Chris Geissler of Barrington, Greg Jacobs of Mundelein, Maria Rodriguez of Long Grove and Joe Walsh of Winnetka.

Beveridge, 48, is a business owner who has gained attention as the founder and president of We Do Care, an organization that supports military troops, veterans and their families.

He pledged to get federal funding for a variety of transportation projects, including the northern extension of Route 53, the construction of the proposed STAR rail line and O'Hare International Airport expansion.

Dawson, 52, is one of only two of the GOP candidates with prior elected experience. A former member of the Crystal Lake High School District 155 school board, he is a former teacher who owns a home building and remodeling company.

He said he opposes the right for woman to have abortions but does not support a constitutional amendment outlawing such procedures.

At 37, Geissler is the youngest of the candidates. A manager with a Chicago consulting firm, Geissler has proposed reducing the corporate income tax by 20 percent and creating $2,500 tax credits for new jobs created as a way to get more Americans working.

Jacobs, 58, is a retired Cook County sheriff's deputy and a military veteran. He said the way to keep Americans employed is to stop all outsourcing, and he opposes corporate salary increases.

Rodriguez, 50, has been Long Grove's mayor since 2005 and previously had served as village clerk and trustee.

A longtime opponent of the northward extension of Route 53 into Lake County, she recently said she favors the construction of a limited-access, arterial highway there, one that would be similar to Palatine Road in Cook County.

Walsh, 47, who works in private equity funding, has unsuccessfully run for public office twice before. He called Medicare and Social Security "well-loved but ill-conceived programs" that need to be reformed.

The 8th District includes parts of Cook, Lake and McHenry counties.

Like every post in the House, the seat carries a two-year term.

Bean, of Barrington, is running for her fourth term. She will be the lone Democrat on the ballot.

Also unopposed in the February primary is perennial candidate Bill Scheurer of Lindenhurst, who's running under the Green Party banner.