Bill Daley joins Chicago mayor's race; Toni Preckwinkle and Chuy Garcia to make announcements this week

CHICAGO (WLS) -- Bill Daley formally announced Monday that he will run for a job once held by his father and his brother -- the same day that sources confirm that Toni Preckwinkle and Jesus (Chuy) Garcia will also join the Chicago mayor's race this week.

Daley, 70, a former chief of staff for Barack Obama and U.S. Commerce Secretary under Bill Clinton, joins a very crowded field of candidates, but has name recognition that few if any of the other candidates have. At least two other high-profile candidates could also join the race by the end of the week.

Preckwinkle, the Cook County Board president, plans to announce her bid on Thursday, said Ald. Pat Dowell (3rd Ward).

RELATED: Will Toni Preckwinkle run for Chicago mayor?

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Bill Daley is the son of former Chicago Mayor Richard J. Daley and brother of former Chicago Mayor Richard M. Daley.

Garcia, a Cook County Commissioner who forced Mayor Rahm Emanuel into a runoff election four years ago, is running for the congressional seat vacated by U.S. Rep. Luis Gutierrez, R-Chicago. In fact, Gutierrez drafted him to run for his seat when he announced his retirement. Now, Gutierrez is strongly urging Garcia to run for mayor and backed him after announcing that he was not running for the mayor's job last week.

RELATED: U.S. Rep. Luis Gutierrez not running for mayor

Garcia is already circulating petitions, along with Gerry Chico who could possibly announce his candidacy by the end of the week, a source said.

In addition, U.S. Rep. Mike Quigley, a Chicago Democrat who represents the 5th Congressional district, is also mulling his options.

At least 13 candidates have said they plan to run for mayor, many of them declaring before Emanuel said earlier this month that he would not run for a third-term.

RELATED: Rahm Emanuel announces he's not running for Chicago mayor re-election

The election is Feb. 26, 2019 and candidates can't file their paperwork with the Chicago Board of Elections until Nov. 19. The deadline to gather the required 12,500 signatures to run is Nov. 26.


Daley has an iconic Chicago family name, but he doesn't expect that will win him the race. He also hopes people don't hold the Daley name against him.

"I'm not going to change my name, let me go on the record, first of all. Some people like our name, some people don't. I would hope they would give Bill Daley the opportunity to present himself, his credentials, his background and what he plans to do for the city," Daley said.

Meanwhile, Daley said Monday morning that he also believes he has the experience to tackle Chicago's problems and lead the city forward. Dealing with crime would be a top priority, Daley said.

RELATED: Who is running for mayor of Chicago?

"So this is an opportunity. We have serious problems, we've got to address the crime problem, we've got to make the city more affordable, and we've got to make it stronger. Stronger economically," he said.

If Rahm Emanuel was running for a third term, Daley said he would not be getting into the race out of respect for his long-time friend. He said Emanuel has done somethings right, but he refused to dissect the rights and wrongs of the past seven years.

But he took a subtle swipe at those who have already joined the race.

"If I thought the candidates that were in there, any one of them could lead this city and have the abilities and the experiences that I've had, I probably would be leaning towards one of those people, I don't see that at this stage," Daley said.

Daley said he spoke to his brother Richard M. Daley, who advised him that if he wanted to run for mayor he should go for it. Their father, Richard J. Daley, was also a long-time mayor of Chicago.

And while he conceded his brother did leave the city in bad shape financially with the huge pension liabilities, he also said he did a lot of good for the city.

His father served as mayor for 20 years; his brother served for 22. If he wins, Daley said he doesn't expect a lengthy stay at City Hall.

"I think there should be term limits, I know that's not real popular in my family but I think we are at a point in the city that we should have term limits," Daley said.
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