Facing a crowded field, Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot is aiming to win reelection next year, and she’s touting some of the progress made during her administration.
Lightfoot attended the groundbreaking of a new South Chicago streetscape improvement project on Tuesday, a $43 million project that she says has been discussed for decades.
“I heard today from some folks that this is 20 years in the making,” she said. “What it will also spur is philanthropic investment, and that’s where the magic really happens with INVEST South/West.”
Lightfoot is facing a tough reelection campaign, with nine other candidates potentially running against her. One prospective candidate did drop out earlier this week, as 15th Ward Ald. Ray Lopez withdrew from consideration and instead submitted petitions to run for reelection to the City Council.
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“It’s not even worth saying anything about it,” she said. “Look, here’s the thing. There’s always going to be a time for politics. What I’m focusing on every day is doing the job that people elected me to do.”
Lightfoot received some criticism for her comments on this weekend’s mass shooting at a Colorado LGBTQ nightclub, which left five people dead and at least 18 injured, with critics accusing her of focusing on national gun violence without expressing concern about issues at home.
She disputed that assertion, saying that efforts are being made every day to stop gun violence in the city.
“We’re nowhere near the finish line, and I’m not going to be satisfied until Chicago is the safest big city in the country,” she said.
Lightfoot says that she feels confident her resume will help carry her to victory in the upcoming election, but also said that she will emphasize her vision of what a second term would look like.
“We’ve got to keep reminding people what we’ve done, but also what the vision is, because the work’s not done,” she said.