CHICAGO – The state's most powerful political county organization - the Cook County Democrats - got together Friday for their pre-primary candidate slating. Former White House Chief of Staff Bill Daley didn't get the organizational nod for the 2014 governor's race, neither did the caucus make a public declaration for lieutenant governor.
And to pressure members of the Black Democrat Caucus that have consistently followed their religious views and said they would not support gay marriage legislation, the Cook County Democrats re-asserted their support for the Democratic National Committee's plank promoting same sex marriage.
The Cook County Democratic Party endorsed Gov. Patrick Quinn for re-election and a full slate of candidates for the March Primary. In addition to Gov. Quinn, the County Democratic Party endorsed U.S. Sen. Richard Durbin, Secretary of State Jesse White and Attorney General Lisa Madigan for re-election. The Party also endorsed Lt. Gov. Sheila Simon for Comptroller and State Sen. Mike Frerichs for Treasurer.
For county-wide offices the party endorsed President of the Cook County Board Toni Preckwinkle, Sheriff Thomas Dart, Assessor Joseph Berrios, Treasurer Maria Pappas and Clerk David Orr for re-election.
"This is an open process we've set up," said the same Joseph Berrios that was endorsed for the assessor job, who is also chairman of the Cook County Democratic Party. "The committeemen have done a great job choosing who they'll support. The party will continue to be strong and we'll stick together with the endorsed Democratic ticket."
For commissioner to the Metropolitan Water and Reclamation District the party endorsed Frank Avila, Tim Bradford and Josina Morita, the first Asian-American slated for Cook County-wide Board of Review 3 District Commissioner Larry Rogers Jr. was endorsed for re-election.
For the Appellate Court, the party slated David Ellis, Freddrenna Lyle and John Simon. Alternates were John Kirby, Sheldon Harris, Raul Vega and William Boyd.
At the Circuit Court level the party slated Andrea Buford, Cynthia Cobbs, Dan Kubasiak, Maritza Martinez, Kate Moreland, Bill Raines, Kristal Rivers, Diana Rosario, Patricia O'Brien Sheahan and Al Swanson. The alternates were Thomas Carroll, Alfred Maldonado, Travis Richardson and Sean Chaudhuri.
Cook County committeemen also endorsed the Freedom to Marry plank from the DNC and Illinois Party Platform which supports "the right of all families to have equal respect, responsibilities and protections under the law."
The Democratic Primary is March 18, 2014. The Cook County Democratic Party is made up of 50 Chicago Ward and 30 Township Committeemen.