Westside Ministers Endorse Kirk - NBC Chicago
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Westside Ministers Endorse Kirk



    Westside Ministers Endorse Kirk
    Illinois Republican U.S. Senate candidate Rep. Mark Kirk laughs during the annual Coumbus Day parade, Monday, Oct. 11, 2010, in Chicago. (AP Photo/M. Spencer Green)

    In a first for Chicago politics, Rev. Willie Wilson and a group of Westside ministers Monday endorsed GOP senate candidate Mark Kirk.

    "It's about the man, not the party," the group said in a statement.

    Rev. Wilson, traditionally affiliated with Democratic causes, says he's more Independent these days.

    "I've been trying to supprt people who will help our community," Wilson said, speaking from the Holy Corinthian Baptist Church in Maywood.

    Kirk says he's especially proud of this endorsement and cited legislation where he sided with President Obama. Kirk pledges "to bring power and dignity to this neighborhood."

    The Giannoulias campaign dismisses the endorsement, claiming Wilson is "not the leader of the Westside."

    Rev. James Meeks also stopped by Holy Corinthian Monday morning and told the assembled crowd to think ahead to the February mayor's race "when the righteous rule the people rejoice." 

    Meeks has not yet formally endorsed Gov. Quinn, and both Bill Brady and Quinn were at Meeks' church Sunday. 

    Meeks defended his role as a minister and a politician, saying that as preachers -"we cannot be discounted because of our faith."