The Rundown Podcast - Show Tile
Stay in the loop with the Windy City’s biggest news. Angela Cheng / WBEZ Chicago
The Rundown Podcast - Show Tile
Stay in the loop with the Windy City’s biggest news. Angela Cheng / WBEZ Chicago

The list of candidates running to be Chicago’s next mayor is set after one last hopeful was kicked off the ballot. Illinois state senators passed a budget bill that would give themselves a nearly 20 percent pay raise. Lawmakers and LGBTQ advocates outline some priorities for Illinois’ spring legislative session.

The Rundown Podcast - Show Tile
Stay in the loop with the Windy City’s biggest news. Angela Cheng / WBEZ Chicago
The Rundown Podcast - Show Tile
Stay in the loop with the Windy City’s biggest news. Angela Cheng / WBEZ Chicago

The list of candidates running to be Chicago’s next mayor is set after one last hopeful was kicked off the ballot. Illinois state senators passed a budget bill that would give themselves a nearly 20 percent pay raise. Lawmakers and LGBTQ advocates outline some priorities for Illinois’ spring legislative session.

Erin Allen: Good morning, Welcome to Monday, I'm Erin Allen and this is The Rundown. 

Alright, it’s official. This February voters will have nine candidates to choose from for Chicago’s next mayor. The field got a little more narrow on Friday, after the Chicago Board of Elections removed police officer Frederick Collins from the ballot, since he didn’t secure enough valid signatures. That leaves eight candidates trying to unseat Mayor Lori Lightfoot, including state Representative Kam Buckner and Cook County Commissioner Brandon Johnson. After failed bids for mayor in the past, Congressman Jesus “Chuy” Garcia, former Chicago Public Schools CEO Paul Vallas, businessman Willie Wilson and activist Ja’Mal Green are also trying again. Plus, two current aldermen – Roderick Sawyer in the Sixth Ward and the Sophia King in Fourth Ward – are also in the running. And if no one wins 50% of the vote in February, then the top two people with the most votes will head to a run-off election.

Most of those candidate showed up to access livings mayoral forum, and my colleague Tessa Weinberg is reporting that a lot of them said they would reopen the city's shuttered mental health clinics. The forum was about 90 minutes on Saturday and it was the first forum to feature incumbent Mayor Lori Lightfoot. The seven candidates who attended were pretty congenial. They focused on topics like housing, transportation and mental health. And Lightfoot defended her decision not to reopen the clinics that were shuttered in 2012. She says it was because patients said they wanted a culturally relevant services in their areas instead.

Lori Lightfoot: We're now providing those services in all 77 neighborhoods for free, regardless of your ability to pay, regardless of your citizenship status.

Erin Allen: Congressman Jesus “Chuy” Garcia says more mental health services are needed, but he was in the minority in not saying whether or not he would reopen the closed clinics. 

Mayor Lori Lightfoot is asking Colorado Governor Jared Polis to stop sending migrants on buses to Chicago. Lightfoot sent a letter to Polis this weekend pointing out that hundreds of migrants have arrived here from Colorado since December 2022. And they're not just coming from there. More than 3,800 migrants have been bused here from Texas since last spring. Lightfoot says in the letter that both Chicago and New York have no more room in their shelters. And she asked the governor to advocate with them for a comprehensive federal response.

Coming up next, I'll have an update on last night's senate session, but looking ahead to the spring legislative session - some Illinois lawmakers want protections for gender affirming care included in any measure that protects reproductive rights. My colleague Alex Degman is reporting that it's one of several priorities that lawmakers and the group Equality Illinois are planning to push. If you're wondering what gender affirming care refers to, it's basically therapies that help trans people match they're outward appearance to the gender that they identify with. And according to Democratic State Representative Kelly Cassidy, it's vital to include those protections. 

Kelly Cassidy: In Illinois, we say gay. In Illinois, we say trans. In Illinois, we tell the monsters that are hunting and tormenting our trans siblings that they are not welcome here.

Erin Allen: In that story I mentioned on Friday about allowing an X in the place of male or female on birth certificates, that's another move in this direction.

And before we get to weather a few quick hits. Illinois State Senators past the budget bill last night that would, among other things, give themselves a nearly 20% pay raise. Elgie Sims was the Senate sponsor of the bill and he says the raise would attract more diverse talent to public service. Now there was some opposition from republicans like state Senator Darren Bailey who said the money should go toward lower wage workers instead. Either way, the bill now heads to Governor JB Pritzker for final approval. And Landmark Development is a developer working with Mayor Lori Lightfoot's administration to reimagine Soldier Field and they released a plan yesterday. The stadium would be transformed into a year round entertainment district with a new multi modal transit hub. A dome would be added to the stadium, seating would be expanded and the number of private suites would also increase. And another sports update, the Chicago Bears ended a miserable season yesterday with their 10th straight loss. That was a franchise record for the highest number of losses in a row. But there's a silver lining. The bears get the first pick in next year's NFL draft. 

As for weather this morning, cloudy and in the mid twenties right now going up to 40 degrees this afternoon and the sun may peak out. Tonight going down to the mid thirties And that's it for now, this afternoon we're starting part one of a two part series on money. And it's not that conversation you're used to hearing about saving, budgeting, investing. It turns out that before we even get to all that, there is a soft science of how we think about money.

Brad Klontz: I'm a big advocate of understanding your family story around money, not just your experiences, but what was it like for your parents, your grandparents? These things get passed down to us,.

Erin Allen: Brad Klontz is a financial psychologist and he'll tell us about the scripts we follow subconsciously when we make decisions about money and why just like so much of our behavior, our money habits start with our parents. It's so interesting y'all, definitely check it out today at two. I'm Erin Allen and I'll talk to you then.


WBEZ transcripts are generated by an automatic speech recognition service. We do our best to edit for misspellings and typos, but mistakes do come through.