The Hyde Park Herald endorses incumbent Christian Mitchell for State Rep. in the 26th District Democratic primary.
After taking stock of the candidates running in this year’s election we’ve noticed that many of our local elected officials such as State Rep. Barbara Flynn Currie (D-25) and State Sen. Kwame Raoul are going unchallenged in the primary. However, community activist Jay Travis is challenging State Rep. Christian Mitchell (D-26) for the second time.
The 26th District, which runs just parallel to Lake Michigan and stretches from the far South Side of Chicago to the near North Side, encompasses portions of Streeterville, the Loop, Oakland, Grand Boulevard, Kenwood, Hyde Park, South Shore and other communities in South Chicago.
The 26th District in our community are the areas of 47th Street to 51st Street, Woodlawn Avenue to Cottage Grove Avenue and 51st Street to 63rd Street, Ellis Avenue to Cottage Grove Avenue.
The Hyde Park Herald believes that Mitchell has done a good job representing the Hyde Park – Kenwood community.
Mitchell has also played a prominent role in the passing of bills surrounding police body cameras, independent investigations of officer-involved deaths and decriminalizing small amounts of marijuana and defended critical programs for seniors, the disabled, and struggling working families.
Reasons the Hyde Park Herald supports Mitchell include:
His sponsorship of HB 4272, which would provide an additional $200 million to Chicago Public Schools (CPS) immediately and over $1 billion in long-term relief—and it would do so without increasing property taxes. The bill would also prevent any future cuts to education and provide increased transparency to ensure education dollars are actually making it to local schools. Mitchell is a co-sponsor of a bill to make the CPS board democratically elected. He is also in support of increased standards of accountability for charter schools and the HJRCA bill that would impose a 3 percent tax on personal income over $1 million, which would bring in over $1 billion in additional funding for local schools making sure that low-income urban districts get the same funding as wealthy suburban districts.
His leading the charge for a progressive income tax that would provide lower and middle-income earners the relief they deserve while also asking those at the very top to pay their fair share. In order to solve the state’s revenue crisis and fund critical programs like education, infrastructure and healthcare for seniors.
His push to have legislation in place that would allow working class families to have more access to quality affordable childcare so their kids can learn in a safe environment while they go to work.
His opposition to Rauner’s “Right to Work” legislation that would bust up unions and cut the summer youth employment program.
His help in co-writing and getting the Police and Community Relations Improvement Act passed. The act requires independent investigations of police involved deaths, mandates additional training for all local law enforcement officers and expands access to body cameras.
His legislation to decriminalize small amounts of marijuana will counteract current drug laws that have disproportionate effects on poor communities and communities of color. Mitchell wants to approach drug addiction as a public health issue not a crime so that non-violent drug offenders can get treatment.
We urge a vote for Mitchell.