We won’t have a governor’s race in Illinois next year. Or a Senate race. Or a race for mayor of Chicago. The presidential candidates won’t be clamoring for our 20 remaining electoral votes, since they’re already reserved for Obama.
What we will have, political junkies, is a contested Democratic primary for Clerk of the Cook County Circuit Court. On Monday, the deadline for filing petitions, 22nd Ward Ald. Ricardo Munoz filed 33,112 signatures to challenge incumbent Dorothy Brown.
A member of the City Council’s Progressive Caucus, the 47-year-old Munoz has represented Little Village since 1993, when he was appointed to replace Jesus Garcia.
Munoz’s campaign has attacked what he says is Brown’s high-handed mismanagement of the clerk’s office. He has accused her of violating state ethics laws by soliciting campaign funds from employees in the office, as well as using employees as chauffeurs and security guards.
The clerk’s office “is in dire need of reform,” Munoz told Chicago magazine’s Carol Felsenthal. “[There is] no accountability in terms of the services that have been provided: $80 million operating budget, a little over 2000 employees. [$100 million annual operating budget and 2,100 employees according to the Clerk’s website.] Dorothy Brown talks about electronic filing in all her presentations, but less than five percent of the cases that are processed are allowed to be electronically filed. DuPage County has electronic filing; the federal court system has electronic filing. We’re stuck in the 1980s. I say the 1980s because if you’re a lawyer submitting some paperwork, you have to do it in carbon copy triplicate, instead of being directed to a copy machine. As my 17-year-old daughter likes to say, ‘There’s an app for that.’”
Munoz will kick off his campaign Wednesday night in Beverly, by speaking to the Mr. and Mrs. Grassroots Political Discussion Group, which meets at 7 p.m. at Favia's Cafe, 10701 S. Hale Ave.
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