By David Orr, Co-Chair of Garcia for Chicago Mayoral Campaign in response Sun-Times editorial: Chuy’s floating blimp springs a leak

The owners of the Sun-Times have made it clear that Chicago should solve its financial crisis by slashing pensions, jobs, and benefits — without a policy to share the pain or gain — and certainly without looking for revenue that doesn’t disproportionately fall on those least able to afford it.

It’s time for the editorial board to stop ignoring Chicago voters, who in growing numbers want a change from the pay-to-play politics that have dominated Mayor Emanuel’s tenure — and whose record is marred by his own failure to shore up Chicago’s sagging finances, which have tanked under his watch.

Garcia took a brave stand on the Obama Library, which he’s always supported, raising principled concerns about using public parkland with deep historical significance to the Black community when the project backers already own enough land for the library. He’s shown that kind of backbone throughout his career — in the fight for a new high school for Black and Latino students, in his vote to fund vital city services during the Washington Administration, and in his support for equal rights for LGBTQ people when most elected officials lacked that courage.

He’s had the guts to fight to protect people’s pensions, oppose the misuse of TIF funds that should go to blighted neighborhoods rather than deep-pocketed downtown players, and challenge regressive taxes.

And while the Sun-Times owners would like to ignore this track record, fortunately, the paper’s rank and file reporters have not shown this kind of bias.

These are real world fights for ordinary people —  the kind of leadership this city has been sorely lacking for the last four years. Chuy will bring that kind of candor and courage to the effort to right Chicago’s financial ship. Sun-Times readers deserve fairness from those privileged to speak from its op ed pages. I know we’ll get that from Chuy as Mayor. The jury is still out for this editorial page.

David Orr