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ENDORSEMENT: Tom Tunney for 44th Ward alderman

44th Ward aldermanic candidate and incumbent Tom Tunney met with the Sun-Times Editorial Board Monday, January 21, 2019. | Rich Hein/Sun-Times

44th Ward aldermanic candidate and incumbent Tom Tunney met with the Sun-Times Editorial Board Monday, January 21, 2019. | Rich Hein/Sun-Times

North Side

What matters most in this election is to preserve a political counterweight to the Ricketts family, owners of the Chicago Cubs, as they continue their aggressive redevelopment of Wrigley Field and nearby streets. The Rickettses, who would prefer a more compliant alderman, are working hard against the incumbent, Tom Tunney, which is precisely why we’re endorsing him. Tunney’s challengers, former state associate budget director Austin Baidas and nonprofit consultant Elizabeth Shydlowski, would appear to be people of integrity. But it’s important to understand, as reported by Crain’s Chicago Business, that the Rickettses — along with others believed to be allied with the family — have flooded the ward with more than $100,000 in dark money campaign spending. Baidas reportedly got into the race after meeting with Laura Ricketts and a pollster, although he says he is not supported by the Ricketts family. Shydlowski accepted a $10,000 donation from Cubs Chairman Tom Ricketts and $5,000 from Todd Ricketts’ wife, Sylvie Legere. The Rickettses have been terrific for the 44th Ward in several ways, as Tunney would readily agree. But their best interests are not always the ward’s best interests. We’re with Tunney, who refuses to be overly impressed and cowed.


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