Chicago City Wire and Northwest Side GOP to host mayoral debate
Matt Podgorski says he feels the need to give Republican voters in Chicago someone they can rally around as mayor of the city.
“The main reason we’re doing this is so constituents within our organization and Republicans across the city still looking for a candidate they can vote for will have more of the information they need to decide,” Podgorski told Chicago City Wire of a Mayoral Candidate Forum the Northwest Side GOP Club will co-host with the newspaper at St. Monica’s Parish on North Nottingham Avenue on Jan. 26.
Hosted by Podgorski, chairman of the organization, and Dan Proft, a principal of Local Government Information Services, which owns this publication, the event will kick off at 2:30 p.m.
Podgorski, who is 39th Ward GOP committeeman, said he feels safe in predicting what the night’s hottest topics will be.
“More than anything, voters want to know what the candidates’ plans are to significantly cut our spending and to get our out-of-control pension system in order,” he said. “We fully expect much of the forum will be spent pressing those issues that so many voters are concerned about.”
Among the plethora of candidates registered to be on the ballot in April, Podgorski said, Paul Vallas, Jerry Joyce, Willie Wilson and Bob Fioretti are all confirmed to be on hand for the forum, with Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle and former White House Chief of Staff to President Barack Obama Bill Daley possibilities.
“We extended an invite to everyone. Some accepted right away and others indicated they had conflicts,” Podgorski added. “I would think they all know they can’t get our support without showing up.”
Podgorski said there’s no denying organizations such as the Northwest Side GOP Club will have a major say in determining who will occupy City Hall after outgoing Mayor Rahm Emanuel.
“Any time you have a large field of candidates, any group that can influence voters in any way has great importance,” he said. “The bottom line is we’re a Republican organization with a lot to say at a time when as many as 100,000 voters in this election identify in some way as Republicans.”
Prior to the mayoral forum, a Northwest Side alderman-candidate meet-and-greet will begin at 1:15 p.m.
Organizations in this Story
Chicago Republican Party • Chicago Republican Party • Chicago Republican Women's Network • Citizens for Preckwinkle • New Republican Org of Chicago • Northwest Side GOP Club • Paul Vallas for All Chicago • Willie Wilson for Mayor