The Combat Veterans For Congress PAC is endorsing the 24th Combat Veteran For Congress in 14 states; he is a fiscally conservative candidate who has been working to rein in the out of control spending by the Pelosi Congress and successfully ran for the Senate seat that was vacated by Senator Barrack Obama when he was elected President of the United States. Senator Mark S. Kirk (R-IL-10) was born in Champaign in 1959 and grew up in Chatham, Downers Grove, and Kenilworth; in 1977 he graduated from New Trier High School. Mark went on to receive a BA in History from Cornell University in 1981, a Master’s Degree from the London School of Economics in 1982 and a JD degree from Georgetown University Law Center in 1992. Mark also attended Blackburn College and Universidad Nacional Autonoma de Mexico.
Mark Kirk received a direct commission as an Ensign in the US Navy Reserve in 1989, and subsequently completed Direct Commission Officers School and the Naval Intelligence Basic Officer Course. Over the course of his 21-year Navy Reserve career, he rose to the rank of Commander. From April to June of 1999, Lcdr Kirk deployed with his Navy Reserve EA-6B squadron to Operation Allied Force and organized the EA-6B Intelligence shop in Aviano Air Base, Italy to support Combat Operations in Operation Allied Force---the Kosovo campaign. According to his Navy Commendation Medal citation, Mark was “singularly responsible for the flawless production, integration and operation of the largest EA-6B intelligence shop in the history of Naval Aviation.” On May 7, 1999, Mark Kirk’s Commanding Officer authorized him to fly as an Intelligence Observer aboard an EC-130 special mission aircraft in support of air strikes over Belgrade. Mark and his intelligence team received the Rufus L. Taylor Intelligence Award for their efforts.
In March and April of 2000, Mark deployed with his squadron to Incirlik Air Base, Turkey to support Combat Operations in Operation Northern Watch (ONW). According to his Officer Fitness Reports, Mark was the “architect of the combat support team deployed to Incirlik AB, Turkey for ONW” and had “completed required qualifications that enabled observation flights during Combat Missions in TAOR [Tactical Area of Responsibility].” Mark’s Fitness Report called him “one of the most experienced, combat-tested Aviation Intelligence Officers in the Naval Reserve.” During ONW for an 8 year period all military flights were under the continued threat of ground fire from Saddam Hussein’s air defense units, they were always “In Harms Way’ and many units were often fired upon.
From December 15, 2008 through January 2, 2009 – and again from December 19, 2009 through January 4, 2010 – Cdr. Kirk deployed to Afghanistan to support the International Security Assistance Force’s (ISAF) mission in Regional Command South. An Officer Fitness Report signed by Brigadier General John Nicholson noted that “Cdr. Kirk’s exceptional intellect, creativity and experience benefited this command and our Nation by laying the foundation for the successful introduction of over 20,000 US troops and hundreds of millions in development investment in this most critical part of Afghanistan.” The Fitness Report continued: “Completely selfless and demonstrating tremendous personal courage, Cdr. Kirk performed duties in two of the most dangerous provinces of Afghanistan– Helmand and Kandahar--routinely traveled to remote bases to enable the best coordination possible with Allies and Afghans.” Those two provinces is where there is open and continuing hostilities; there are no front or rear lines.
In 2000, Mark was elected to represent Illinois’ 10th Congressional District in the U.S. House of Representatives. After his election to Congress, Mark opted to continue his service as a Navy Reserve Intelligence Officer – serving one weekend a month, two weeks a year without pay in the National Military Command Center. In Congress, Senator Mark Kirk distinguished himself as a champion for military personnel, Veterans, military families, and employed the fiscal discipline we seek in all the Combat Veterans For Congress we endorse. He saved his district’s VA hospital from being closed, secured Impact Aid funding for the education of military families, and led the effort to establish a National Memorial for Disabled Veterans. He voted against the Stimulus Bill, supports the line item veto, and cosponsored the Balanced Budget Amendment to the Constitution. Senator Kirk was endorsed by the Illinois Chamber of Commerce and has been awarded the "Spirit of Enterprise Award" by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. His "Small Business Bill of Rights" proposal was endorsed by the National Federation of Independent Business. Senator Kirk is a member of the Veterans of Foreign Wars.
If you review Cdr. Kirk positions on various issues on his Web site, you would be pleased with his stands; they agree with the Combat Veterans For Congress Mission Statement. We look forward to working with Senator Kirk, and are pleased that a Combat Veteran of his stature successfully ran for the US Senate. If you have friends, associates, or relatives who know voters in the state of Illinois, kindly pass this E-mail on to them, and ask them to support Cdr Kirk by working in his campaign, providing financial support for his campaign in any amount, and/or by networking with others who would be willing to support his campaign. The military is one of the few remaining institutions producing the caliber of men and women needed to restore this nation to the greatness our Founding Fathers envisioned. A Veteran is someone who, at one point in his life, wrote a blank check made payable to “The United States of America” for an amount “up to and including his life.”