115th District candidate Jacobs outlines campaign values
If you listen to Illinois voters, you’ll hear many talking about establishment politics and how a calcified system makes people cynical, and as a result, some candidates for state legislative seats are trying to change the culture in Springfield.
Dr. Paul Jacobs is an optometrist and business owner who is running against Rep. Terri Bryant (R-Murphysboro) in the 115th District, which covers Jackson, Jefferson, Washington, Perry and Union counties.
In speaking to the press about his campaign, Jacobs has been vocal about transparency issues within the state, including the lack of an inspector general to lead the state’s ethics commission during a three-year gap before the recent appointment of Julie Porter.
Jacobs further discussed the abuse of power by state politicians with Southwest Illinois News.
"It starts with respect for humankind," Jacobs said, speaking about how these abuses of power tend to erode the public trust. "You have to have some recognition of God and of human life."
One particular problem, Jacobs said, is a system where state jobs are handed out as rewards.
"A lot of this abuse (of power) comes from these patronage jobs," Jacobs said, describing how, after acting as "good soldiers" for a particular politician’s agenda, some recipients of state jobs seem to have been rewarded for political behavior or for connections to powerful political figures.
"They should go through the regular channels," Jacobs said of those who might seem to be benefiting from favoritism.
Some of the conflicts of interest at the state level, Jacobs said, are "very apparent."
Speaking about the values he learned in his own upbringing, Jacobs wondered whether the new generation is raised with the same respect for others.
Another major issue, he said, is the effect of abortion on society; in prior remarks, Jacobs has criticized Gov. Bruce Rauner and his role in an abortion-related bill that Jacobs feels distances the governor from the Republican base.
"You can’t just abort freely," Jacobs said of the legislation that expands abortion coverage for women on Medicaid and state employee insurance.