Four relative newcomers to local politics are vying in the 9th Congressional District Republican primary for the honor of taking on Democratic incumbent Jan Schakowsky in the November general election. That’s a steep mountain to climb in this safely Democratic district, where Schakowsky routinely has scared off more viable GOP challengers.

Our endorsement goes to  D. Vincent Thomas Jr., a maritime law enforcement specialist with the U.S. Coast Guard. Thomas served on the Board of Ethics in the City of Evanston, on the board of the Friends of the Forest Preserves, holds a doctoral degree in public policy and administration, and has a solid record of military service.

Also running are John Elleson, a minister; Retired Army Lt. Col. Sargis Sangari, CEO of the Near East Center for Strategic Engagement; and Maxwell Rice, an energy pricing manager.