Chris Kennedy speaks at 5th Ward meeting

llinois Democratic Gubernatorial candidate Christopher G. Kennedy greets area residents during a 5th Ward meeting hosted by Ald. Leslie Hairston (5th) at Hyde Park Academy High School, 6220 S. Stony Island Ave., Thursday, Aug. 10. Hairston indicated that she will have similar events in the future for other 2018 gubernatorial candidates. – Marc Monaghan

By JOSEPH PHILLIPS
Staff Writer

Illinois gubernatorial candidate Chris Kennedy was the guest speaker at the 5th Ward monthly meeting on Thursday, Aug. 10. The meeting was hosted by Ald. Leslie Hairston (5th) at Hyde Park Academy High School, 6220 S Stony Island Ave.

During Thursday’s meeting, which had about 40 attendees, Kennedy shared the three strategies he would implement for Illinois citizens if elected governor.

Kennedy said the first thing he would do is rebuild the state’s education system.

“Where do we rank in the state of Illinois in education? We are massively behind Massachusetts and Minneapolis who are the standard,” Kennedy said.

He said the second thing he would do is keep the city safe. He explained that those living in impoverished areas need more opportunities to obtain entry-level jobs with high wages so that they could take care of their family, better education, and a stronger police force. He believes that this solution could help quell some of the violence in Chicago.

“Opportunity is the enemy of violence,” says 2018 Illinois Democratic Gubernatorial candidate Christopher G. Kennedy as he speaks to area residents during a 5th Ward meeting hosted by Ald. Leslie Hairston (5th) at Hyde Park Academy High School, 6220 S. Stony Island Ave., Thursday, Aug. 10. Hairston indicated that she will have similar events in the future for other 2018 gubernatorial candidates. – Marc Monaghan

“Opportunity is the enemy to violence,” Kennedy said.

Kennedy said the third thing he would do is fight for the state’s
economic future.

“We need a capital budget, we need a capital plan,” Kennedy said. “In Cook County some homes have been over accessed because of over taxing and corruption.”

Kennedy said his goal is not only to implement his three strategies for Illinois residents but also expose Democratic Party insiders who profit from the property tax appeals system. He said he would prohibit elected officials from simultaneously having jobs as property tax appeal lawyers.

He has currently called for a ban on those types of lawyers from making political contributions, as well as a ban on assessors from holding positions in a political party.

“I’ve straddled the worlds of business and politics,” Kennedy said. “I understand how government works, but more importantly, I know how an economy is meant to function, not just for the rich, but for members of all communities.”

Illinois Democratic Gubernatorial candidate Christopher G. Kennedy has a conversation with area residents after he spoke during a 5th Ward meeting hosted by Ald. Leslie Hairston (5th) at Hyde Park Academy High School, 6220 S. Stony Island Ave., Thursday, Aug. 10. Hairston indicated that she will have similar events in the future for other 2018 gubernatorial candidates. – Marc Monaghan

Kennedy, the son of the late Sen. Robert F. Kennedy and nephew of President John F. Kennedy, was the president of Merchandise Mart Properties in Chicago from 2000 until 2012. The property was originally owned by the Kennedy family until it was sold to Vornado Realty Trust, a real estate investment trust. The Merchandise Mart, one of the properties of Merchandise Mart Properties, is the largest commercial building in the world, serving as both a luxury wholesale design center and one of the leading international business locations in Chicago. 

J. B. Pritzker, who is also a 2018 Illinois gubernatorial candidate, will be the guest speaker at the next Indivisible Chicago  – South Side meeting Monday, Sept. 25, at First Unitarian Church, 5650 S. Woodlawn Ave., from 7:30 p.m. to 8:45 p.m.