This is a once in a lifetime opportunity to have two Black women in positions to address the disparity in quality of life issues for all residents in Chicago and Cook County.
Political neophyte and North Sider Lori Lightfoot is Chicago’s mayor. While veteran politician and South Sider Toni Preckwinkle is the Cook County board president and chairwoman of the Cook County Democratic Party.
For the past 30 years, Chicago’s Black community has undergone what is tantamount to an economic cleansing by past administrations. Our last hope is you two women.
We’re not looking for a second coming, but we are looking for the two of you to work together to help “right the ship.”
We voted for both of you. The Black community voted for a relatively unknown because we were tired of getting the short end of the stick in education, jobs, economic development and public safety. We voted to keep Preckwinkle where she is—as Cook County board president, because she had just won re-election in November 2018.
Both women have our vote of confidence and the green light to do things differently, to enact policies that are progressive and lift up people and communities rather than systematically destabilize them. You have our vote of confidence to stop using Black and brown residents as piggy banks to fill government coffers, but instead invest in our institutions to provide support and opportunities.
The mayoral runoff election was more than five months ago. That’s plenty of time for both Mayor Lightfoot and President Preckwinkle to put their differences aside and make their constituents a priority. Next year is pivotal. In addition to all of the problem-solving at home, they will be responsible for helping to elect the next President of the United States, implementing the 2020 census, supporting local candidates and putting progressive judges on the bench—from Supreme Court to Circuit Court.
Voters put their trust in the two of you. We’re counting on you both to work together to make our city and county better for all of us.