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ENDORSEMENT: Dilara Sayeed for Ill. House in the 5th District Democratic primary

Dilara Sayeed, IL House 5th district Democratic primary candidate. Sayeed is accused of paying The Chicago Defender for a positive article in November 2017. | Rich Hein/Sun-Times

Two years ago, the Kenneth “Ken” Dunkin-Juliana Stratton race in the 5th District was one of the most closely watched in the state. Stratton won, but she now is running for lieutenant governor. Dunkin — who riled many Democratic voters by backing Republican Gov. Bruce Rauner on key votes — is running to regain the open seat.

We endorse Dilara Sayeed, a 20-year fifth- and eighth-grade teacher and chief education officer of the Golden Apple Foundation, in this narrow legislative district that stretches from Grand Crossing on the South Side to Goethe Street on the Near North Side.

Sayeed has a solid grasp of the problems the state faces. She wants more spending on education on both K-12 schools and public universities, and she would work to stop illegal guns from flowing across the state’s borders. She wants more programs to stop recidivism among those convicted of crimes and expanded mental health treatment. She would oppose more casinos and a permanent property tax freeze.

Also running are Lamont J. Robinson Jr., an adjunct professor and owner of two insurance agencies who says he would make a priority of economic development, and first-time candidate Felicia N. Bullock, who would focus on community safety.

When the Democrats running in the 5th Illinois House District Democratic primary visited the Chicago Sun-Times Editorial Board on Jan. 30, we asked each to introduce themselves to voters. Watch Dilara Sayeed’s response: