* Fran Spielman…
The Chicago Federation of Labor decided Monday to remain neutral in the historic April 2 mayoral runoff in a move likely to be seen as a boon to Lori Lightfoot and a major blow to Toni Preckwinkle. […]
On Monday, the CFL met with and questioned both candidates and discovered little difference between their positions on labor issues. […]
Sources said IBEW Local 134 and Operating Engineers Local 399 are leaning toward endorsing Preckwinkle.
Laborers Unions that provided heavy support to Susana Mendoza in Round One are leaning toward Lightfoot. So is Local 9 of the Electricians Union.
Operating Engineers Local 150 — another union with a Sun-Times Media ownership stake — will either endorse Lightfoot or remain neutral, sources said. That union has ties to a dark-money PAC that spent $1.2 million to blanket the television airwaves with ads blasting Bill Daley as “Bruce Rauner’s mayor” and as a “Wall Street banker who got rich off working people.”
You’d think some of these unions would be open to backing Preckwinkle because she’ll still be county board chairman if she loses the mayor’s race. But her campaign was pretty heavy-handed with Mendoza, and that angered some of the comptroller’s institutional supporters. SEIU may have over-played its hand with other unions (and the CFL) as well.
There’s usually plenty of time to heal wounds inflicted during the primaries for countywide and statewide offices (unless you’re Bruce Rauner, but he’s the outlier with a lot of things). Chicago’s runoff day is just four weeks from tomorrow. It’s simply way too soon to forgive and forget and Lightfoot apparently isn’t a threatening presence to most unions.
* I think Preckwinkle’s biggest problem is that people who voted for everyone else in the first round did so at least partly because they couldn’t bring themselves to vote for the purported “front-runner” - and that would be 84 percent of those who voted. Few really know who Lori Lightfoot is, which as a commenter pointed out earlier today is most definitely a big help at this point in the campaign. It’s hers to lose right now because she’s 1) not Toni Preckwinkle; and 2) a blank slate.
Preckwinkle has to firmly and quickly take Lightfoot down, gin up the aldermen with the warning that Lightfoot will take away their outside income and their ward prerogatives, hand out as much patronage as she can lay her hands on, get the church ladies on her side and otherwise rehabilitate her own image (although the latest poll found that, despite it all, she still has a 53-37 fav/unfav rating). All in four short weeks.
Not to mention that yet another self-inflicted wound could prove politically fatal. She’d also better hope that nothing happens with the federal case against Ald. Ed Burke in the next few weeks.
* On the other hand, Lightfoot didn’t even have a campaign manager until now…
Lightfoot’s team has hired Manuel Perez, the campaign manager for U.S. Rep. Jesus “Chuy” Garcia, as campaign manager. […]
Perez also ran Garcia’s 2015 campaign against Mayor Rahm Emanuel and more recently ran Tanya Patino’s campaign for the 14th Ward seat won by disgraced Ald. Ed Burke.
Preckwinkle didn’t endorse Chuy when he ran for mayor, so this might be a little payback without having to get directly involved.
I’m curious whether other candidates who ran real campaigns held anything back from their Preckwinkle oppo books that they could now share with Lightfoot. Stay tuned.
* This should give you an idea of the direction Preckwinkle is going…
Meanwhile, Preckwinkle has hired three veteran African-American campaigners to her team. They reflect “the diversity and values” of the campaign, according to a release. Jessey Neves becomes campaign manager. She’s a longtime aide to Preckwinkle, who first served as director of communications and policy for her 2010 campaign for Cook County Board president. The Preckwinkle campaign has also hired Jason Lee as deputy campaign manager. Lee has served as political director of United Working Families and before that with the Chicago Teachers Union and AFSCME’s International Union. And Ty Cratic has been named director of operation. He currently is chairman of the Cook County Young Democrats and sits on the executive board of the Cook County Democratic Party.
Cratic’s LinkedIn page says he’s been Preckwinkle’s Director Of Operations since November.
Lightfoot reported nearly $360,000 in campaign contributions between Wednesday and Saturday, with $100,000 alone coming from Chicago philanthropist Leslie Bluhm, $50,000 from Phillip Peters, of Chicago, and $10,000 from Northwest Side Ald. Scott Waguespack, 32nd, according to state election data. During that same stretch, Preckwinkle reported $6,500. Heading into the Feb. 28 election, Preckwinkle had reported raising about $4.6 million — second only to Bill Daley who raised $8.3 million. Of the 14 candidates, Lightfoot was in the middle of the pack. She reported raising $1.5 million.
The latest spending report from Comcast shows Preckwinkle just bought $42K in ads compared to Lightfoot’s $1,287.
* In race for mayor, Lori Lightfoot and Toni Preckwinkle court the 2/3 of Chicago that didn’t vote for them
* Laura Washington: Two black women running for mayor? For some black men, that’s a nightmare