CHICAGO – Candidates for Chicago mayor are not taking a holiday break.
The candidates are their teams are tying up loose ends before the campaign intensifies in the new year.
Thursday morning, candidate Willie Wilson accused rival Toni Preckwinkle, the Cook County Board President, of not following a law intended to make sure poor people who commit minor offenses don’t stay stuck in jail.
Wilson said during a Christmas Day visit to the jail with Rev. Jesse Jackson, he found non-violent misdemeanor offenders locked up.
“People who are supposed to be doing the right thing by our community … Toni Preckwinkle and the other officials of the county … I hold them totally responsible for this act,” Wilson said. “Those young men and ladies could be at home with their families.”
Wilson pledged to spend $100,000 to bail out as many non-violent offenders as possible. He also said if the county doesn’t empty out the jail, he’ll sue.
“If I was out there breaking the law they’d have me again hanging on State and Madison upside down. We need these county official people hanging on State and Madison upside down too for breaking the law,” he said.
A spokeswoman for Preckwinkle said the president’s effort to reform the jail speaks for itself and that since she took office, the number of people detained in Cook County on a daily basis has decreased by 40 percent.
In ballot news, the Chicago Board of Election has addressed more petition challenges. A decision pertaining to Ja’Mal Green is expected on Saturday and three candidates have been knocked off the ballot.
Also, according to the board, Catherine Brown D'Tycoon is in serious jeopardy. Thursday, the mayoral hopeful lashed out at Preckwinkle and Dorothy Brown for bringing forth challenges.
“Withdraw your challenges to my petition signatures and allow the City of Chicago to have another choice,” D'Tycoon said.
In fundraising news, Bill Daley reported big money on Christmas Eve bringing his total amount raised to more than $3.2 million.
Others who’ve topped a million include Preckwinkle, Gery Chico and Wilson.