Chicago mayoral candidates court voters ahead of Tuesday’s election

CHICAGO — With just days to go before Chicago’s mayoral election, candidates spent Saturday courting voters.

At Northeastern Illinois University, some of the city’s big unions held a rally for Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle.

A frontrunner from the start, Preckwinkle has had her share of ups and downs. In the final weeks of the race, she’s defended against her close ties to embattled Ald. Ed Burke and recent campaign staff controversy.

“It goes with the territory,” she said. “When you’re the frontrunner, you’re the object of the tomatoes.”

In Lincoln Park, Bill Daley met with campaign workers. The former White House chief of staff has benefited from big donors — but faced the hurdle of being the son and brother of former Chicago mayors.

“Give me a chance to tell you who Bill Daley is,” Daley said. “I’m proud of my brother, I’m proud of my family… But give me a chance to lay out some of the things that I want to do and who I am.”

“All I ask is for people to give me a fair shot,” he continued, “and I think the people of Chicago are fair people and they’re doing that.”

Illinois Comptroller Susana Mendoza braved the rain to visit early voting sites Saturday.

Former CPS CEO Paul Vallas said his credentials as a policy problem solver speak for themselves.

“Problem solving has been my career,” Vallas said. “I come from a family of veterans and firefighters and teachers. This is what the Vallas family has always been about, and the city needs a problem solver.”

Former federal prosecutor Lori Lightfoot, who heads the Chicago Police Board, said her campaign is picking up undecided voters this election.

“As an independent reform candidate who’s stood for good government,” Lightfoot said, “I think that message resonates not only in the good week that we’ve had, but the momentum that we’re feeling all over the city.”

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