The Service Employees International Union state council will put its money where its mouth is in the race for mayor, following its endorsement of Toni Preckwinkle with a $1 million contribution to her campaign.
The seven-figure donation ratchets up the fundraising arms race among the mayoral contenders, and shows why the backing of a union such as SEIU can be important as the candidates try to find the money to pay for advertising to get their messages out and separate themselves from the crowded field. There are 21 candidates for mayor trying to get on the Feb. 26 ballot.
The SEIU state council is the political arm of the union in Illinois, and includes SEIU locals 1 and 73 and SEIU Healthcare Illinois & Indiana.
SEIU Local 1 spokeswoman Izabela Miltko-Ivkovich said the union would make the contribution Monday.
“The janitors, home care providers, public employees and thousands of working families united in the SEIU Illinois State Council are committed to do whatever it takes to elect the first African-American woman mayor of Chicago, the only true progressive in the race, and that starts with making sure Toni Preckwinkle has the adequate resources to compete and win,” Miltko-Ivkovich said in a statement.
n a statement, Preckwinkle thanked union members for the money.
“I am thankful for the thousands of hard-working janitors, security officers, home care providers, public employees united in the SEIU Illinois State Council, who have contributed to my campaign and shared commitment for an inclusive and compassionate Mayor’s office,” she said.
Miltko-Ivkovich said the SEIU spent about $3 million between direct contributions, in-kind contributions and its own independent expenditure TV ad buys on Jesus “Chuy” Garcia’s failed 2015 run for mayor against Rahm Emanuel. She would not estimate how much the union plans to spend to back Preckwinkle this time. “The working families of Chicago made it clear at the endorsement that they will do whatever it takes to make sure she has the resources to compete,” she said.
SEIU Healthcare and Local 73 endorsed Preckwinkle last week, the same day the Chicago Teachers Union threw its weight behind her bid. SEIU Local 1 had previously endorsed her.
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December 10, 2018 at 05:06AM