Candidate Forum: Alexi Giannoulias

Wed. January 27, 2010 12:00 AM by Jay Shaff

alexi giannoulias

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Giannoulias: We need fresh independent leadership in the US Senate

"We're an energetic, enthusiastic bunch" said Alexi Giannoulias referring to his staff and supporters as he sat down for a brief chat with over the noon hour at his LaSalle Street campaign office.

Giannoulias is one of a crowded field of Democrats vying for the nomination to fill the US Senate seat currently held by Democrat Roland Burris and previously held by President Barack Obama.

"My parents always taught me to treat people equally and fair. With me being the first senate candidate in history to be in favor of gay marriage, I didn't do this for political reasons and to get more votes or raise more money…it's not a political move, it's how I feel," Giannoulias offered.

"I'm proud to be the only candidate on either party to put forward a comprehensive economic plan to create jobs, invest in green technology and jobs, capital for small business."

Giannoulias, at 33 is the youngest of the field, currently serves as Treasurer for the State of Illinois.

"This election is about jobs. We need to do everything we can to rebuild this country."

When asked what his stand is on taxes, Giannoulias said "No one likes taxes, I don't like paying taxes. We need to make things more consistent. Build and rebuild this economy. Create jobs, invest in new technologies. Make sure that the financial collapse that we had never takes place again. Until people have access to capital and have jobs, things won't turn around."

"There have been more bank failures in Illinois than any other state than Georgia. It's not getting enough attention." As part of the family that owns troubled local Chicago Broadway Bank, Giannoulias added "I understand the challenges the community bankers and that regular folks are facing every day."

"I am proud to be the first candidate for Senate in Illinois not to take money from the big lobbyists."

When asked if he would introduce or sponsor legislation in the US Senate related to LGBT issues, Giannoulias said "Of course. It's consistent with my values."

"Legislation is the smartest most consistent way to grant rights. Don't Ask Don't Tell (DADT) is a bad policy for a number of reasons. It's expensive, dangerous and costs a lot of money," and he believes that President Barack Obama should step in on DADT.

"This election will offer voters a stark choice between failed economic policies or a promising future. We need fresh independent leadership in the US Senate," said Giannoulias. "This is an incredibly important election."

More information on Alexi Giannoulias can be found at

Democratic Senate candidates Alexi Giannoulias, Jacob Meister, and Robert Marshall offered time to and the LGBT community through these informative candidate forums. Democratic Senate candidates David Hoffman and Cheryle Jackson, and the Republican Senate candidates did not respond to requests. does not endorse political races.