Cook County State's Attorney candidates get major endorsements

CHICAGO (WLS) -- Just one day before early voting begins, two of the candidates running for Cook County State's Attorney got big endorsements on Sunday.

Former Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn's endorsed Kim Foxx while attending morning services on the South Side, while incumbent Anita Alvarez picked up an endorsement from the Hispanic American Labor Council.

Quinn did endorse Alvarez in 2008, but said her handling of the Laquan McDonald case was a factor in his decision. She has been roundly criticized for waiting a year before charging white Chicago police officer Jason Van Dyke with first-degree murder after fatally shooting the black teen 16 times in October 2014.

"It's very important to have a person of integrity," Quinn said. "A person who has courage. A person who is independent and a person who understands justice for all."

While Alvarez maintains her political independence, her challengers continue to attack her record and judgement.

"Judgement is what's failed us in this state's attorney's leadership," Foxx said. "It's her judgement that has caused us to have a crisis in conscience."

Alvarez was in the city's Little Village neighborhood on Sunday greeting voters. She characterized Quinn's endorsement of her challenger Foxx, a former assistant state's attorney and one time chief of staff for Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle as party politics.

"Ex-Gov. Quinn owes a lot to Cook County Board President Preckwinkle who gave him almost a million dollars in his re-election campaign. So, I think today is a little bit of political payback," Alvarez said.

Meanwhile, calling herself a true independent, candidate Donna More -- a former state and federal prosecutor -- targeted both Foxx and Alvarez.

"She covers up cases," More said of Alvarez. "She's not transparent about what she's doing. She doesn't have a sense of justice."

Of her other opponent she said, "Miss Foxx has lied about credentials by a magnitude of thousands. She's tried a thousand of cases, well it turns out that she only tried one jury."

Political experts said the race for Cook County State's Attorney will be close, based on which voters turn out.

Early voting begins on Monday. The primary election is March 15.
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