7 Chicago mayoral hopefuls test messages at candidate forum

CHICAGO -- Seven of the ten Chicago mayoral hopefuls came together on the same stage Thursday.

Dorothy Brown, Ja’Mal Green, Paul Vallas, Willie Wilson, Troy LaRaviere, Lori Lightfoot and Garry McCarthy attended the forum that was organized by the Independent Voters of Illinois Independent Precinct Organization and moderated by WGN’s Paul Lisnek.

Neil Sales-Griffin and Mayor Emanuel were invited but did not attend.

The election is eight months always but the candidates are out raising campaign cash and testing their messages.

Among the field policy differences are emerging but every challenger says Mayor Emanuel has failed Chicago.

Campaign money will matter in what will likely be a long an expensive contest. Mayor Emanuel ended last month with $7.5 million in the bank. All other candidates had less than a million dollars.