Divine Intervention? Black Ministers Support Stroger

By BJ Lutz and Mary Ann Ahern
|  Tuesday, Oct 13, 2009  |  Updated 6:50 PM CDT
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Divine Intervention?  Black Ministers Support Stroger

NBCChicago.com

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Vowing to put Todd Stroger "back to where he is supposed to be," a group of about 300 African American ministers announced support for the Cook County Board President in his campaign for re-election.

A group called Clergy for a Better Chicagoland, which includes the Rev. Clay Evans and Nation of Islam Minister Louis Farrakhan, met late last month to agree on supporting one black candidate.  Stroger campaign manager Vincent Williams said the ministers called for united support for Stroger.

Pastor Walker Turner said he is concerned "about what we stand to lose" and said "we are looking for moral high ground," in the race which is "going to affect our children's children."

He said, "We will not allow you to intimidate us" but did not identify who you is. 

Leonard Mohammad from the Nation of Islam said "Louis Farrakhan wants me to relate his call for unity," and said "It's time for us to look out for our own interests."

What impact the endorsements have remains to be seen.  A Chicago Tribune poll last month found Stroger was floundering with only a 10 percent approval rating.

Those challenging Stroger include three other black Democrats, Congressman Danny Davis, Chicago Alderman Toni Preckwinkle and Cook County Circuit Court Clerk Dorothy Brown. Cook County Water Reclamation District President Terry O'Brien, who is white, is also running.

None of the other candidtes have shown any signs they'll drop out.  The primary is Feb. 2.

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