Reporting Derrick Blakley
CHICAGO (CBS) — There’s one last day of campaigning before Tuesday’s primary for the 2nd Congressional District special election.
The race to replace disgraced former Congressman Jesse Jackson Jr. is drawing national attention.
In suburban cook county, nearly 4,500 voters cast their ballots early and 700 others sent in absentee ballots. Even though those numbers sound small, that’s actually a bit higher than in 2009, the last primary special election to replace a congressman.
A low turnout was already expected for the primary,but the winter storm that’s bearing down on the area could depress the vote even further.
CBS 2′s Derrick Blakley reports on what the candidates are doing to make sure their voters get to the polls.
At field office on Stony Island, Robin Kelly’s phone bank volunteers are working to ensure her voters come out, even if the weather shouts stay in.
“Every vote is important no matter what the election but in a special election where not as many people come out, it’s critically important,” said Kelly.
Kelly and Alderman Anthony Beale were both out greeting voters. Beale is counting on his city council allies to help pull him through, whatever the weather.
When asked about potential difficulty getting some people to vote, Beale responded, “That’s the beauty of having a ward organization. We know who those people are and we’re gonna call them, talk to them, knock on their door. If we need to pick them up and get them to the polls, we’ll do that.”
And former Congresswoman Debbie Halvorson, hoping for a return to D.C., powered by voters’ disgust over the corruption of former Rep. Jesse Jackson Junior.
“People are so angry with what the 2nd district has been through the years that they’re going to take a special interest in making sure that they vote for someone who’s totally different than what they’ve seen,” said Halvorson.
Halvorson spent all day in Will and Kankakee County, where she believes she’ll run the strongest.
Aldermen Beale is getting help from 34th Ward Aldermen Carrie Austin and 8th Ward Ald. Michelle Harris. He believes that gives him a firm, city base.