Flores endorses Chico in mayoral race

October 11, 2010 9:32:28 AM PDT
City Colleges President Gery Chico received a key endorsement in the Chicago mayoral race Monday morning.

The endorsement came from Illinois Commerce Commission Chairman Manny Flores.

Chico took credit for improving Moos Elementary School, the school Flores and Chico appeared at - as well as the other schools in Humboldt Park and the education system as a whole during his time as Chicago Public Schools Board president.

"As I said, you have to restructure the budget. You cannot accept things as they are today. There's much ground to be found in things like consolidation, there's even ways for the city to make money," said Chico. "I'm not talking about privatization. There are other ways that we can raise revenue for the city. It's not all about how much you can go into the taxpayers' pocket for."

Chico is also the current City Colleges of Chicago president and former chief of staff to Mayor Daley.

Flores himself was a possible mayoral candidate, but said that for multiple reasons, the foremost being family concerns, he will not run.

"After much soul-searching and consideration, I have reached the difficult decision of not pursuing a candidacy for mayor," Flores said Monday. "My decision is based on a number of personal reasons, chief among them is that I have a very young family and believe that this is just simply not the right time."

Flores's decision not to run for mayor and endorsement could give Chico a boost with Hispanic voters.

Nonetheless, Chico said no one is running a Latino campaign, saying the campaign is broad-based and is about all of Chicago.

Chico said that he looked forward to receiving Flores's advice during the campaign, and he said that "Manny and I share a common vision for the future of our city."

Chico is still gathering the signatures required to run for mayor, as are many other possible candidates. Candidates are required to submit 12,500 signatures by the third week of November to get on the February ballot.

He will face Miguel del Valle and State Senator Ricky Hendon, along with former White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel, in the mayoral election to replace retiring Chicago Mayor Richard M. Daley.


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