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Lori Lightfoot To Potential Mayoral Challengers: Bring It On

"What I want the voters to ask themselves is: Think about what we’ve been through. Think about what all of us have had to sacrifice. Then ask yourself, who's up for the job? I know I am."

Mayor Lori Lightfoot speaks with the press at Walter Payton College Preparatory High School during the first day of in-person learning for high school students on April 19, 2021.
Colin Boyle/Block Club Chicago
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CHICAGO — Mayor Lori Lightfoot all but announced her reelection campaign during a news conference Monday in Bronzeville, and she urged those who think they can do better to get into the race.

Lightfoot spoke after announcing $138 million in community development grants, which will provide grants of $42,000-$7.25 million to businesses across the city. The program is being funded through federal COVID-19 relief money as well as the city’s tax increment financing program.

When Lightfoot was asked why she would be teasing a reelection bid so far before the 2023 election, she said reporters continually ask her about it — and inquire about her potential challengers.

Most recently, Rep. Mike Quigley announced he will not run for Lightfoot’s seat, despite a poll memo showing him beating Lightfoot by 10 points. So far, only businessman Willie Wilson and Ald. Raymond Lopez have announced their candidacy.

“I will be making an announcement, and it will not be a surprise to anyone what that announcement is,” Lightfoot said. “It’s important for people to be reassured. … We have made tremendous progress, even despite a pandemic. We’ve made investments across our city that are going to benefit neighborhoods for another generation. I’m very, very proud of that work.”

As for those who think they can do better, she said, “Get in.”

“I take all comers. I ain’t fear no one,” Lightfoot said. “And that’s not bravado. It’s me remembering who I am [and] the sacrifices my parents made to put me here.

“I know how tough the job is. What I want the voters to ask themselves is: Think about what we’ve been through. Think about what all of us have had to sacrifice. Then ask yourself, who’s up for the job? I know I am.”

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