CHICAGO — After days of fallout from his comments about abortion and the holocaust, Darren Bailey is trying to regroup by returning to his signature issue — crime.
Republican candidate for governor Darren Bailey was back in Chicago Monday for a stop at Fraternal Order of Police Lodge 7.
After endorsing Aurora Mayor Richard Irvin over Bailey in the primary, the FOP has switched to the downstate farmer turned lawmaker.
“We thought Richard Irvin had the best chance to beat Pritzker. Darren Bailey proved us all wrong,” Chicago FOP President John Catanzara said.
Bailey, running on a tough-on-crime platform, seized on weekend violence in Chicago — including a deadly shooting on a CTA train.
“J.B. Pritzker, Lori Lightfoot and Kim Foxx — they’ve become the Three Musketeers of crime with chaos, tragedy and crime in Chicago,” Bailey said.
Bailey said he wants to reinstate the death penalty for cop killers and repeal the SAFE-T Act, which includes an end to cash bail beginning in January — a move unlikely to happen if Democrats keep their supermajorities in the legislature.
Governor Pritzker unloaded following Bailey’s appearance.
“Darren Bailey isn’t good for police officers. Daren Bailey voted against the expansion of the Illinois State Police, I proposed that,” Pritzker said. “He also voted against saying police pensions — billions of dollars — by voting against police pension consolidation.”
Mayor Lightfoot also took aim.
“Newsflash, Darren: Homicides down 16 percent, shootings down 20 percent and we are going to do better this year,” she said.
Bailey is trying to get his campaign back on track after taking heat for comments he made five years ago.
“The attempted extermination of the Jews in World War II doesn’t even compare on a shadow of the lives that have been lost with abortions,” he said in 2017.
Bailey’s remarks were widely condemned. On Monday, the candidate left his FOP appearance without taking questions from the media.
Bailey’s campaign promises to take questions from reporters again soon.