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Rep. Bustos Endorses Pritzker for Governor

Cass Herrington
Peoria Public Radio

Illinois’ 17th District Congresswoman Cheri Bustos endorsed Democratic candidate JB Pritzker in his run for Governor, Mon. His appearance at the AFL-CIO Labor Temple started 90 minutes later than scheduled, due to unfavorable flight conditions.

Dense fog enveloped Peoria Monday morning. A member of Pritzker’s campaign team says his plane circled the area for 30 minutes, then rerouted to Galesburg. Pritzker apologized for the delay and said the flight was “a lil’ dicey.”

About 20 people, mostly with labor union ties, stuck around to hear the endorsement from Rep. Bustos. The Congresswoman says JB Pritzker is taking a different approach, by focusing on downstate Illinois.

“This is a guy who’s going to be our next governor, who’s not going to have to understand how you get to Peoria, how you get to Pekin, how you get to Monmouth,” Bustos said. “He’s going to know the way, and that was a critical part of my decision making as to who I was going to endorse in this race.”

And the morning’s weather complications may have reinforced his familiarity with this part of the state.

Pritzker says he’s so far opened four campaign offices outside of Chicago, to include one in Peoria’s Warehouse District. He’s also the wealthiest Democratic candidate for governor, contributing more than $14 million of his own money into the campaign.

He’s also garnered endorsements from 23 labor unions in Illinois, and his comments Mon. targeted union-weakening measures backed by Gov. Bruce Rauner, like scaling back right-to-work laws.

“He wants to make sure people are working for less, and frankly, that has no place in Illinois. We should have a governor who wakes up every single day thinking about how to raise wages, how to preserve our labor unions and to bring jobs to Illinois.”

Other Democrats in the crowded field are Alderman Ameya Pawar, Chris Kennedy, State Sen. Daniel Biss Bob Daiber, Tio Hardiman and Alex Paterakis.