U.S. Sen. Mark Kirk has a pretty sweet new role in Congress.  

The freshman Senator will be taking over the historic position at the “Candy Desk” in the Senate Chamber and will be providing Illinois-made candy for members of the Senate at his own expense.  

Kirk volunteered for this assignment, hoping to bring recognition to the myriad of confectionery companies located in Illinois.  

“Holding the Senate Candy Desk provides me an opportunity to promote employment among Illinois candy makers,” says Kirk. “Chicagoland is the center of this industry with over 3,400 jobs represented by the participating Illinois companies.”  

The “Candy Desk” originated in 1965 when Sen. George Murphy (R-CA) regularly kept treats at his desk for his senate colleagues. The sweet tooth senator manned the station until his departure from the senate in 1971.  

Since then, various senators have helped keep the tradition alive, providing candy for hungry congressmen. Usually located toward the back area of the Republican side, the desk occupies the Chamber’s most heavily trafficked entrance.  

Products from the following Illinois companies will be available:  

Wrigley Gum
Tootsie Roll Industries
Lambs Farm
Garett Popcorn
Blommer Chocolate
Company Long Grove Confectionary
Jelly Belly
Illinois Nut & Candy
Ferrera Pan Candy Company  

Each company will be named an “Official Provider to the U.S. Senate Candy Desk.”  

For more information, visit www.kirk.senate.gov 

 -G.W.