Garcia endorsement not a good thing for Kennedy, GOP contends
Democratic gubernatorial candidate Chris Kennedy has received an endorsement that proves he's out of touch with voters, the Illinois GOP contends in a press release.
The endorsement came from Jesus “Chuy” Garcia, a Cook County commissioner and staunch supporter of the controversial soda tax.
Kennedy held an event in late September to highlight his endorsement from Garcia, and the GOP contends that Kennedy's willingness to showcase support from someone who voted for the soda tax makes it clear that he does not care about Illinois families and taxpayers. Republicans noted that Kennedy’s constituents overwhelmingly oppose the tax.
The GOP also claims that the endorsement by Garcia, an ally of board President Toni Preckwinkle and proponent of the soda tax, ties Kennedy to what Republicans deem a money grab by Chicago Democrats.
"Garcia and Kennedy are a perfect pairing because they are both clearly out of touch with Illinois voters,” GOP spokesman Aaron DeGroot said in the release. “Garcia's support of the Soda Tax despite 87% of Cook County residents' disapproval just goes to show that Chicago Democrats like Garcia and Kennedy are wrong for Illinois."
The soda tax went into effect in August. Although touted as a public health initiative to address obesity, the tax is commonly viewed as nothing more than a revenue stream by many of its critics. A recent article in the Chicago Sun-Times noted that projections indicate that Cook County could receive an estimated $200 million in revenues from the soda tax.
The controversial tax has been the subject of judicial review. In July, the Cook County Circuit Court issued a temporary restraining order on the beverage tax following a lawsuit arguing it was unconstitutional. The court ultimately dismissed the suit.
The Cook County Board is scheduled to vote on a repeal of the tax on Oct. 10.
The GOP said it will continue to keep an eye on Kennedy, whom it believes is spending his time courting members of what the party terms the "Madigan Machine" and Chicago political insiders.
“The people of Illinois are watching," the party said in the release. "Chris Kennedy should be worried if he continues to choose Chicago insiders over Illinois families and taxpayers."