CHICAGO (CBS) — After weighing a potential second bid for mayor for nearly a month, Cook County Commissioner Jesus “Chuy” Garcia has decided not to enter the crowded race to replace Rahm Emanuel. Instead, he will focus on running for Congress in the November election.

Garcia, who forced Emanuel into a runoff election in 2015, but ultimately lost, had been considering running for mayor in 2019 ever since Emanuel announced on Sept. 4 that he would not seek a third term.

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Although he said he was “tempted to make another run,” Garcia said, “I sincerely believe I can do more for my city now in Washington.”

“This decision is not about ascendancy or political positioning; it is about integrity and what I feel I can do for my city in Congress,” Garcia said in a statement Monday afternoon. “Chicago desperately needs federal help to tackle our infrastructure and transportation issues. Our city’s immigration crisis can be solved only by Congress. Guaranteeing the rights of women and gay citizens and other minorities will be secured only through congressional action.”
Garcia is running for U.S. Rep. Luis Gutierrez’s seat in the House of Representatives, after the veteran congressman decided not to run for another term.

Gutierrez, who decided a week after Emanuel’s announcement that he would not run for mayor, had been trying to recruit Garcia to run in 2019.

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“I want Chuy to come back and finish that revolution he started four years ago,” said Gutierrez.

Garcia did not indicate if he plans to endorse anyone for mayor.

“Chicago needs a mayor who is beholden to no one. We need mayors and congressional representatives who are persuaded by one thing: the best idea in the room. And we need lots of best ideas, whether in the form of a Marshall Plan or something better, we need bold ideas that will improve education, public safety, health care, infrastructure, transportation and whatever it takes to bring economic vitality into neighborhoods that are breeding grounds of hopelessness. We can no longer abide hearing a teenage boy say he doesn’t expect to live past 25,” he said.

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At least a dozen other candidates have announced bids for mayor, including Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle, former White House chief of staff and Commerce Secretary Bill Daley, Cook County Circuit Court Clerk Dorothy Brown, former Chicago Public Schools principal Troy LaRaviere, former Chicago Board of Education President Gery Chico, former Chicago Police Board president Lori Lightfoot, former Chicago Police Supt. Garry McCarthy, former CPS Chief Executive Officer Paul Vallas, millionaire businessman Willie Wilson, policy consultant and former 2015 mayoral candidate Amara Enyia, community activist Ja’Mal Green, attorney Jeremiah Joyce Jr., former City Council candidate John Kozlar, DePaul University student Matthew Roney, and tech entrepreneur Neal Sales-Griffin.