She Runs Illinois 2020! — Kacie Weicherding, candidate for IL House Rep, District 108
She Votes Illinois is pleased to feature Kacie Weicherding, running for IL House of Representatives, District 108. Follow our series, She Runs Illinois 2020!, leading up to election day as we showcase and uplift the voices of Illinois women running for public office in the upcoming election.
Tell us about yourself
I am a lifelong resident of Illinois 108th district and I’m running to amplify the voices of everyone in the district that have been left behind and overlooked. I’m running because I understand the experiences of working families and the hardships they often experience.
Tell us about the women in your life
I launched my campaign last year at the age of 25. Running for office as a woman is hard, even more so when you’re young enough to be most of your constituents’ daughter or granddaughter. There are a lot of bad days, sometimes people forget that candidates are humans but I’m incredibly fortunate to have my mother, my mentor Representative Katie Stuart, and my friends to always turn to. I have the best support system a candidate could ever wish for. My mother is the most influential woman in my life. She is one of the strongest women I know. After my father died when I was 12, she raised me by herself while working 12 hour shifts as a nurse. My mother is incredibly selfless.
What led you into politics? Why are you running for THIS office?
I don’t think there was ever a question of if I would run for office, it was the question of when. I am the daughter of a union boilermaker. My dad would always teach me about workers rights and the world we lived in. I’m running for this office because a democrat hasn’t stepped up to run in this district since 2012. The community deserves someone to fight for them. Voters all across the 108th district feel ignored and forgotten. I’m running to fix that.
If you were currently in office, how would you use your office to address the economic harm from COVID19 in your community?
I think it is important to highlight the programs that Illinois put in place. If I were in office, I would educate my constituents on the many options they have. I would advocate for small businesses, while focusing on the health of our communities. I would also advocate for our federal government to be more proactive.
Recognizing that systemic racism is built into policies and laws, what changes to policies and laws are you prioritizing for change/implementation in order to address systemic racism and why?
Police reform is one of my top priorities. I think we can all agree that our country has a police brutality issue and that our police officers genuinely have too much on their plate. I would like to shift their responsibilities and retrain.
What are the most overlooked issues from a policy perspective impacting women in your district?
Healthcare. We are incredibly fortunate to have Planned Parenthood right outside of the 108th district, but in rural areas we lack access to healthcare still. Mental healthcare needs to be accessible without an incredibly long waitlist. We need to fund rural clinics and make sure our residents can get to them.
What do you wish you had known before you decided to run for office?
That it is okay not to know everything. Don’t stress about not having an answer to every question. You’re not less of a candidate for saying “I’m not sure about that, let me get back to you when I can do some research” None of us can know every single issue, we’re human, YOU’RE HUMAN.
I’m running to amplify everyone’s voice. To make sure that everyone in the district feels safe, included and heard. It’s time for new representation, it’s time to have someone represent the 108th district who understands the working class. I want to make sure Illinois keeps moving forward. I love this district and this state and I will always fight endlessly for the best quality of life for everyone.
If you would like to learn more about Kacie Weicherding and her platform or volunteer for her campaign, please check out her website at votekacie.com. Don’t forget to follow her on social media @votekacie. Reach out today and help make a difference in the upcoming 2020 election.
(The information contained in this post is provided only as general information and does not imply an endorsement by She Votes Illinois.)