Hastert And Lipinski Discuss Election

Nov 9, 2012

Two former Congressman from northern Illinois held a political discussion Thursday night. Dennis Hastert and Bill Lipinski offered their thought's on this week's election.

The event, which was moderated by political scientist Matt Streb, was the final installment of the NIU and WNIJ Presidential Speaker Series.

Hastert, a Republican who served as House Speaker, and Lipinski, a Chicago Democrat, were asked about a variety of topics related to the election. One of the questions had to do with the struggle for the Republican ticket to attract Latino votes. 

Lipinski, who was known as a moderate Democrat, says there's no doubt that the GOP needs to make itself more attractive to that demographic. He says Republicans can do that by convincing someone like Marco Rubio to run for president in 2016. 

Hastert, meanwhile, says the GOP's lack of appeal to Latino voters really took shape after 9/11. He says his party really came down hard on illegal immigration. Hastert added that Republicans need to step back and examine their stance on the issue.

As for reducing some of the partisan gridlock in Washington,

Lipinski says it won't happen anytime soon, given the fact the power structure didn't change after the election. Hastert says when it comes to dealing with controversial issues, such as the federal deficit, leaders from both sides are going to have give up some ground in order to get things done.