Carol Moseley Braun Statement at Rainbow/PUSH Rally
February 12, 2011 -- Chicago Mayoral candidate Carol Moseley Braun made the following remarks today at the Rainbow/PUSH Get Out The Vote Rally:
You know me. I am from here. I marched with Dr. King to open up Gage Park, and with Rev. Barrow to close down the Red Rooster stores. I kept my promises to you in the Illinois House and the US Senate, and fought every step of the way to bring your concerns into the closed rooms where decisions were being made about your rights. I have been a warrior for justice and equality, and a champion for peace consistently, and without exception or distraction. And, even though I have stumbled, I have been through the fires and tested and I have learned. I am tough as nails with the heart of a whale. Now I am fighting to become the Mayor of our city. At stake is the direction this city will take with the schools, with the parks, with the busses and trains, with the city colleges, with the airport, with housing and homelessness, with job creation and business development and health care and services for seniors. At stake is the future of our city.
I know some are spending a lot of money to convince you that we can’t win, that this election is over before it starts with phony polls and personality politics. The money is flowing like water to buy this election, but don’t you worry about any of that. And, as Harold Washington, used to say, “Take the money and vote for me”.
I am not asking you to vote for me just because I am black. I am not asking you to vote for me just because I am a woman. I am not even asking you to vote for me as Mayor because I have more credentials and experience to do the job than any of the others. I am asking for your vote because you know that I will work for you I will fight for you, and I will make your business my business. I always have and I always will. I am asking you to vote for your own interests to be heard and represented. Not the insiders who want to privatize everything, including our schools, who have already given us the most expensive parking meters in the country, who have plundered the TIF money that was supposed to rebuild blighted areas. There is no telling where that money went!
Everywhere you turn, every time one candidate opens his mouth, there is a reference to our President, Barak Obama. The President has not made an actual endorsement in a local race for Mayor, no matter how many slick ads and pictures they publish. And to paraphrase the late Lloyd Bentsen: I know President Obama, I opened doors for President Obama, and I guarantee you the candidate with $14million dollars is no Barack Obama!
Let’s face it – you can trick people just so long, but the truth will come out. I need your help to tell everybody the truth behind those slick ads before the voters can be deceived. The truth is that the candidate with $14million dollars voted against the efforts of the Congressional Black Caucus to represent your interests some 128 times! The CBC fought for education and housing – on March 20, 2003, March 25, 2004, and March 22, 2007 he voted against it. In 2004, The CBC tried to send a small amount of food aid to Africa- $5 million- during the drought –he voted against it. In 2004 The CBC tried to increase funding for child care- he voted against it. In 2006 The CBC tried to save job and retraining programs for federal prisoners – he voted against it. In 2004 the CBC attempted to support the National Center on Minority Health and Health Disparities –he voted against it. He held a press conference about extending the Red Line beyond 95th – but in 2003 – he voted against it. He even voted against funding for a pharmacy school for Chicago State University.
Chicago’s minority populations – all of them- get less than 10% of Chicago’s contracts – and he used to be known as an opponent of affirmative action, but now He is using a Barack Obama mask to hide his true record of working against black people and progressives.
I could go on, and you should look it up, talk it up, become the voice of the community. I can give you information, but there is no substitute for the record. They can do ads, but there is no substitute for public opinion. The best way to tell what someone will do is to look at what they have already done. I sued the Democratic party to increase minority representation, and that court victory gave blacks three additional districts and Hispanics the first district ever in the State of Illinois. The chances are good that a district from which an Asian will be able to be elected will happen now…because of that lawsuit.
The state legislature passed a resolution calling me the “Conscience of the House” because of my work for poor people, for getting the first cost of living increase for public aid, for proposing the first moratorium on the death penalty, for fighting for educational opportunities for prisoners and working people, and for getting the money to create the Chicago High School for Agricultural Science.
For six years I was the only African American in the US Senate, and in spite of all of the noise and brickbats, I had a record of accomplishment that was second to none in my class. I brought back over a billion dollars to this state for infrastructure projects, not including the money to fund the Bronzeville Military Academy, and I fought for women’s pensions and health care and choice, and equality for LGBT people.
I will fight for you .He hasn’t and he won’t.
Right now the people of Egypt are showing us once again that a people united cannot be defeated. They have just toppled one of the most powerful regimes in the world, and are on the way toward bringing democracy to their country. I am asking for your help to bring Democracy to Chicago. You can turn out the insiders and the deal makers and the slick deceivers who would put this city up for sale to their friends and cronies.
The vast majority of this city is suffering the same hard times as you are. Last week, I saw a whole village of the homeless living under a bridge on the far northwest side. We must do better, and we can do better. If you want to rebuild our neighborhoods, reclaim our communities, give us safer streets and public transportation and support for senior citizens and hope for our young men and women, turn on the power of the people, and Bring Democracy to Chicago.
It is not hard to do. Let your word of mouth campaign to spread the truth make them spend every dime of that $14million dollars. Let your conversation with friends give chapter and verse of my record of fighting for you and his record of fighting against you.
Come out to help us, go to our website, vote on Feb. 22. And, when you elect me as Mayor, the people will have a chance to open up city government. We will include all and exclude none in my administration. Together we will rise out of the ashes of this recession, creating new jobs and housing, neighborhood schools and communities of caring. We will have honest government that works for the people when we bring democracy to Chicago.
Be not deceived. Don’t let this election be bought, or your confidence shaken by false and misleading punditry. Vote for yourself and for your future, and give our city hope that this election will revive the spirit of Harold Washington. We have the numbers. We have the opportunity. Let’s take the power.
I ask for your prayers and your support and your vote. Our website is www.carolforchicago.com
My punch number is 3. The election is Feb 22.
Let’s bring democracy to Chicago, and when we do, I will come back to PUSH as your new Mayor. Thank you and God bless you.