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Democratic U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin, left, and his opponent, Republican state Sen., Jim Oberweis, squared off for a final time Wednesday night before next week's election | (AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh)

Durbin, Oberweis square off for final time

Sen. Dick Durbin D-Ill., and GOP Senate nominee Jim Oberweis clashed Wednesday in their last joint forum before the election over raising the minimum wage, whether Durbin is a bully and whether Oberweis supports the Tea Party.

The stakes were higher for Oberweis at the forum on WTTW’s “Chicago Tonight,” because every poll shows he is running behind Durbin, who is seeking his fourth term.

Oberweis mentioned at least four times that Durbin has been in Congress for 32 years (including his time in the House), a line he uses often in scorning Durbin as a “career politician.” But Oberweis, who can thank his multiple election losses for a far shorter career in political office, did not deliver a tide-turning blow during the hour-long session.

 

Michelle Obama returning to Illinois

First lady Michelle Obama returns to Illinois to get out the vote for Democrats in her home state, hitting Moline on Saturday at a rally to help boost turnout for Gov. Pat Quinn, Sen. Dick Durbin D-Ill, and Rep. Cheri Bustos D-Ill.

Obama guidance, schedule, Oct.29, 2014. More Ebola

WASHINGTON — President Barack Obama on Wednesday meets with members of his public health and national security teams on the government’s Ebola response and later delivers remarks at an event with health care workers fighting Ebola.

Joe Ricketts has contributed $4.8 million to super PACs in 2014. | AP Photo/Nati Harnik

Illinois super PAC superplayers spend big

A Republican gay rights super PAC on Tuesday reported spending $295,880 in ads and direct mail to help former Rep. Bob Dold, R-Ill., in his close race with Rep. Brad Schneider, D-Ill., who also supports gay marriage.

Jon Carson steps down as chief of Obama's Organizing for Action

WASHINGTON — Jon Carson, the executive director of Organizing for Action, the spin-off of the Obama campaign based in Chicago's West Loop, is stepping down to join a solar company but will remain connected to the group by becoming a co-chair of the OFA board of directors along with current chair Jim Messina.

Democratic incumbent Rep. Brad Schneider (left) and Republican challenger Bob Dold have similar views on defending Israel. | File photos

Schneider, Dold fighting for the Jewish vote in 10th District

WASHINGTON — When it comes to supporting Israel, Rep. Brad Schneider, D-Ill., and his rival, former Rep. Bob Dold, R-Ill., hold positions so similar they are slices off the same loaf of challah. The two are in a rematch battle for the north suburban 10th Congressional District seat.

Michelle Obama voting by mail

WASHINGTON — First lady Michelle Obama, back home in Chicago earlier this month to lead an early vote rally for Gov. Pat Quinn, is voting by mail in Illinois.