Raoul leads victory parade in local races

Kwame Raoul acknowledges his supporters at the Fairmont Millennium Hotel after Erica Harold conceded to him in the race for Illinois attorney general. (Photo by Marc Monaghan)

Staff Writer

State Sen. Kwame Raoul (13th) will be the next Illinois attorney general, marking the ascendance of another Hyde Park–Kenwood politician to the upper echelons of the Illinois government.

In his comments, Raoul addressed national politics, referring the coordination among Democratic state attorneys general against policies and actions of the Trump administration — “to defend the dignity of country as we know it,” he said.

He attacked the president for his profane comments about African nations and Haiti, where his parents were born.

“It’s the country that sent to Chicago its first permanent settler,” said Raoul, referring to Jean Baptiste Point du Sable. “It’s the country that sent to America in the 19th century hundreds of soldiers to fight for this country’s liberty.”

“We reject the hate that has come from Donald Trump, the divisiveness that has come from his mouth,” he said, referencing the recent Pittsburgh synagogue murders and attempted mail bombings of Democratic figures. He further attacked the president for his environmental policies and opposition to abortion rights.

The son of a doctor, Raoul pledged to fight for healthcare as well as LGBTQ rights and, as some in his family had been undocumented, immigrants. He said he will fight for criminal justice reform, including on the behalf of police officers.

Curtis Tarver II was elected to replace longtime legislator and House Majority leader Barbara Flynn Currie as representative for Hyde Park’s 25th district.

In a statement, Tarver praised Currie for her mentorship and four decades of service.

“I look forward to working with other local elected officials, community organizations, churches, schools, and community leaders to build strong coalitions throughout 25th District,” Tarver said. “I am incredibly grateful to the residents of the 25th District for electing me to represent them in Springfield, and I promise I will be a champion for early childhood education, criminal justice reform and economic opportunities for our communities.”

State Rep. Christian Mitchell (26th), director of the Illinois Democratic Party, won reelection unopposed, as did Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle, the former Fourth Ward alderman and the chair of the Cook County Democratic Party.

Hyde Park’s congressional representatives, Democrats Bobby Rush (1st) and Robin Kelly (2nd), were easily reelected.

Check the Herald online tomorrow at www.hpherald.com for analysis on how Hyde Park–Kenwood voted.