CHICAGO (CBS) — It’s the battle of endorsements in the race for mayor of the city of Chicago.
And also allegations of a shakedown.
Political reporter Derrick Blakley has a look at an election turning uglier by the day.
Lori Lightfoot gladly accepted the backing of former candidate Willie Wilson, who won 14 of Chicago’s black wards, in the election’s first round.
“Our neighborhoods are starving. And we have to meet that challenge,” said Lightfoot.
With Wilson throwing this shot at the candidate he didn’t endorse, Toni Preckwinkle.
“How can you expect things to change when she is the machine,” asked Wilson.
In return, Preckwinkle showed off endorsements from a host of ministers.
“We need strong, bold, passionate, sensitive proven leadership,” said Reverend Michael Eaddy of the People’s Church of Harvest.
But Preckwinkle’s campaign charged that Wilson sought to name key commissioners and asked Preckwinkle to pay his campaign costs in exchange for Wilson’s support.
Preckwinkle insisting she refused.
“In the 30 years that I have been in public life, we’ve never paid the campaign debts of our opponents, nor have I promised anyone that they could appoint positions as bureau chiefs or department heads and I’m not gonna start now,” Preckwinkle said.
Wilson, a multi-millionaire, denied seeking anything, including money.
“I got several calls from people asking me to endorse her, as late as yesterday, so that don’t make sense right?”
And Lightfoot defended Wilson, accusing Preckwinkle of desperation.
“When you don’t get what you want, you move on, you don’t call names, disparage, and try to call names as we are seeing today.”
Preckwinkle’s team also dug up a Lightfoot tweet from three weeks ago, where she attacked Willie Wilson as a supporter of President Trump and former governor Rauner.
On Friday, Lightfoot side-stepped comment on the tweet. And Wilson admitted supporting Republicans adding that “I’m for anybody who will lower my taxes.”