Chuy Garcia ‘shocked’ over Solis details; may not endorse in mayoral race

SHARE Chuy Garcia ‘shocked’ over Solis details; may not endorse in mayoral race

Illinois Senate President John Cullerton (right), Ald. Danny Solis (center), and Jesus “Chuy” Garcia attend church in Pilsen in 2012. Garcia, now a member of Congress, says he is shocked by allegations regarding Solis, who is retiring from the City Council. I Sun-Times file photo

WASHINGTON – Rep. Jesus “Chuy” Garcia, D-Ill., whose political turf includes the 25th Ward, told the Sun-Times on Tuesday he was “shocked” over revelations about retiring Ald. Danny Solis (25th) federal probers catalogued in a 2016 affidavit.

Solis’ calls were monitored by federal authorities and Garcia also said it is likely his conversations with Solis were captured through the years.

Garcia, who ran for Chicago mayor in 2015 and made it to a run-off with Mayor Rahm Emanuel, also said he may not endorse anyone in the large field of candidates running for the open spot.

Early voting for the Feb. 26 election has started and a nod from Garcia would be meaningful since it’s been hard for rivals to distinguish themselves with so many running.

“I have not endorsed anyone. I’m still listening and watching and analyzing the candidates. … I haven’t been swayed yet by any of the candidates to this date.”

RELATED: Feds say Solis traded favors for sex acts, Viagra, donations

Asked if it were possible that he would not endorse anyone, Garcia said: “It’s not out of the question but something may move me.”

Of the bombshell details in the Solis affidavit, revealed by the Chicago Sun-Times, Solis said: “Well,” I’m shocked, I think as everyone else in Chicago and in that part of the city is at what’s been revealed through this affidavit,” Garcia said when asked his reaction.

The affidavit includes Solis’ quest for Viagra and sex.

“There’s a lot of personal stuff. It’s — everything is pretty bizarre. The greatest concern should be political corruption, of course, something that I’ve stood against since I delved into politics.

“And of course I’m disappointed. The worst aspect of this is that there’s probably more to come in terms of action on the part of the federal authorities.”

Solis also wore a wire for federal investigators probing Ald. Ed Burke (14th), who is now facing criminal corruption charges. Solis earlier had called for Burke to withdraw from his re-election race.

Asked if he suspected Solis was wearing a wire, Garcia said, “Absolutely not.”

And about his calls with Solis being monitored, Garcia said, “I have no clue. We’ve, we’ve had all kinds of conversations about everything from food to the weather to Mexico to just folks in the neighborhood who have passed away to contests citywide.”

Garcia said his focus is not the salacious material about Solis included in the affidavit.

“The core issue here is political corruption and where that has occurred and it needs to be addressed.”

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