It was another big day for Chicago mayoral candidate Lori Lightfoot, as she picked up two endorsements, but her opponent was not on the trail as early voting got underway.
Lightfoot, who led opponent Toni Preckwinkle in polls coming after the February election, picked up the endorsements of the progressive group Our Revolution Chicago, and of one of the city’s newspapers, as the Chicago Tribune gave her their backing.
“Lori is the progressive in this race, make no mistake about it,” Our Revolution’s Clem Balanoff said.
The group, inspired by Senator Bernie Sanders’ 2016 presidential campaign, held an event Friday to endorse Lightfoot, just hours after she received the endorsement of the Tribune.
The newspaper had previously endorsed former White House Chief of Staff Bill Daley, but went for Lightfoot in their latest endorsement Friday.
“Her most notable talents cannot be captured on paper,” the Tribune said. “She is known as a realistic problem-solver. Those who’ve worked alongside her describe her as an innovator, a lawyer of high integrity, a woman with a mighty big backbone. No one ever has outworked her.”
“I’m happy to have the endorsement of both newspapers,” Lightfoot said. “I’ve been working hard to demonstrate my leadership, demonstrate our vision, and to make sure I’m articulating what I think needs to change in our city.”
Preckwinkle, who did not campaign on Friday because of meetings with her staff, did express optimism this week about the organization she has built as she tries to win Chicago’s highest office.
“I’m really optimistic,” she said. “I’ve gotten warm receptions as I’ve gone around the city. We’ve got a great staff and wonderful volunteers.
Even though Preckwinkle wasn’t on the trail Friday, a popular surrogate was, as TV’s Judge Greg Mathis canvassed for the candidate.
“I’m supporting her because I support people who I know and who I trust,” he said.
As the candidates prepare for the stretch run in the race, early voting began in downtown on Friday, and with a smaller ballot this time around, turnout was high, as a steady stream of Chicago voters filed into the supersite location.
That early voting will continue through the weekend at the supersite, and sites in all 50 wards will open for early voting in the mayoral race beginning on Monday.