Duckworth Ducks Media on California Trip
Members of a local television crew were frustrated when Tammy Duckworth, Democratic nominee for U.S. Congress in the 8th district of Illinois, refused to answer their questions about her campaign in Los Angeles today.
Duckworth's finance director, Leah Israel, initially stopped the local Fox 11 crew from approaching the candidate outside a hall at Santa Monica College, where Duckworth had addressed an audience of students and veterans about veterans' issues.
The Fox 11 crew had attended the entire hour-long lecture, and had hoped to interview the visiting candidate when the event was over.
"We're not Fox News," one of the journalists pleaded, promising not to ask confrontational questions.
Eventually, Israel allowed them to approach the candidate, and Duckworth declined to answer their question about her campaign. "This is purely a veterans' trip...I'd rather not talk politics," she said, as her finance director hovered nearby.
Duckworth then responded briefly to a question about veterans' affairs before concluding the interview.
Incumbent Republican Rep. Joe Walsh has made an issue of his challenger's repeated absence from the district for out-of-state fundraisers and events. His campaign sponsored a contest to fly a supporter to Los Angeles to see her speak.
Accordingly, Duckworth chose to keep a low profile, though local journalists appeared to believe she was going to be available for interviews.