Ward Room
Covering Chicago's nine political influencers

Toi Hutchinson Announces Bid for JJJr's Old Seat

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A representative from Speaker Boehner's office of communication reads into Congress the resignation letter from Jesse Jackson Jr.

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Convicted Former Rep. Wants JJJr's Seat

Former Democratic Congressman Mel Reynolds announced Wednesday his bid for his old 2nd District seat. Reynolds served in the House of Representatives from 1993-95 but resigned after he was convicted of having sexual relations with an underage campaign worker. Mary Ann Ahern reports.
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Sen. Toi Hutchinson has made it official. She's running for Jesse Jackson Jr.'s old seat in the 2nd Congressional District.

Hutchinson, of Olympia Fields, first made her intentions known a mere three hours after Jackson resigned last week, but she told Ward Room on Wednesday she hadn't officially announced her run. Turns out Thursday was her day.

“Families in the South Suburbs and the South Side deserve a representative who understands their concerns and who will work alongside President Obama to create new jobs, rebuild our roads and schools, and protect the gains we’ve made on equal pay, health care and civil rights,” Hutchinson said in a statement.

Hutchinson has served in the Senate since 2009 and, if elected to Congress, aims to focus on jobs and long-term economic development. "Hutchinson will fight to ensure that the hard working families of the Southland do not bear an unfair burden of deficit reduction," her announcement stated.

She follows convicted former Rep. Mel Reynolds into the race. Reynolds announced his bid Wednesday while standing in front of signs reading "redemption" and "so he can finish the job."

Reynolds served in the House from 1993-95 but resigned after being convicted of sexual relations with an underage campaign worker.

Reynolds admitted he made mistakes but said it shouldn't overshadow the work he did for the community while in office. "I've said and I've said again, I made mistakes, but again, it was almost 18, almost 20 years ago."

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