LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) - The Kentuckiana Chapter of the Associated Builders and Contractors held its 5th annual Chili Cook-off on Oct. 6 and the two candidates recently endorsed by the organization for congressional seats were on hand.
Republican candidate Todd Young is running for Indiana's 9th District seat, currently held by Democrat incumbent Congressman Baron Hill. Fellow Republican Todd Lally is running for Kentucky's 3rd District seat which Congressman John Yarmuth holds. Both candidates, who are campaigning aggressively before the general election, said they appreciate the support from the association.
Jenny Shulhafer, ABC's public affairs representative, said their organization support Young and Lally for a couple of reasons.
"These are really good candidates. Our people are mad. They're looking for work. They're laying off people and they want people with fresh ideas that want to change it," said Shulhafer.
Shulhafer said the unemployment rate for the construction industry is at 21 percent. Young and Lally claim it boils down to getting things stabilized.
"These are all small employers, small business owners and what they want is stability and they want predictability," said Lally. "So we will provide that as Republicans. We're not going to raise taxes on them."
"The most important thing we can do in Washington regarding getting this economy moving again and helping ABC and similar business groups is to create a measure of certainty," Young said.
Shulhafer said another reason their association endorsed Lally and Young is because they oppose the Employee Free Choice Act, also known as Card Check. It's a federal bill that would make it easier for workers to form or join unions.
WAVE 3 contacted Democratic incumbents, Hill and Yarmuth, for their responses, regarding the GOP candidates.
"We wouldn't expect to see support from any organization that opposes a woman's right to equal pay in the workplace," said Elizabeth Sawyer, Yarmuth's campaign manager. "Congressman Yarmuth supports equal pay for equal work as well as legislation that is revitalizing manufacturing in Louisville and has lead to the creation of thousands of jobs at Ford and GE."
Daniel Altman, Hill's communications director, said the congressman has always been a friend to small businesses and has endorsed by the NRA, VFW, and FOP.
"When Hill walked through the district earlier this fall, he talked with small business owners about issues like his support of tax credits for small businesses that are hiring workers and increased lending to small businesses," Altman said.
Voters in both states will go to the polls on November 2.