Former U.S. Sen. Carol Moseley Braun formally announced her campaign for mayor of Chicago on Saturday. Braun quickly took on opponent and former White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel, who has run commercials saying Chicago must stay a top-tier city, saying it poses "a completely false choice."
"Chicago will always be a great city, because its people will tolerate nothing less," said the 63-year-old former U.S. Ambassador to New Zealand. The challenge is "whether our city will be great for all its citizens or only for those who live in the right neighborhoods, who have the right jobs, who have the right connections, who get the no-bid contracts, and the multi-million dollar paychecks."
"The crowd, who carried signs but often blew on their hands and stamped their feet to keep warm, booed when Emanuel's name was mentioned," reports the Tribune.
Besides Braun and Emanuel, U.S. Rep. Danny Davis, former City Colleges chief Gery Chico, City Clerk Miguel Del Valle, and state Sen. James Meeks, the outspoken anti-gay pastor of one of the city's largest mega-churches, have announced their candidacies. Davis was chosen as the "consensus candidate" by a coalition of black politicians, religious and community leaders, who had previously considered backing Braun, the first and only African-American female U.S. senator.
Gay Chicago reports: "As a senator she was one of the most reliable supporters of LGBT rights, breaking with the Clinton administration to oppose Don’t Ask Don’t Tell, the military’s ban on openly gay and lesbian servicemembers, and again to vote against the Defense of Marriage Act, which forbade federal recognition of gay and lesbian marriages. 'I’ve always supported the gay community, without hesitation, blinking an eye or a second thought,' Braun said, noting her pride in being inducted into the Chicago Gay and Lesbian Hall of Fame as a friend of the community." Braun was one of only 14 Senate votes to oppose DOMA.