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Weyermuller: On hand when IL GOP Lieutenant Governor candidate returns to Chicago roots

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Stephanie Trussell, GOP candidate for Lieutenant Governor with Darren Bailey
 
By Mark Weyermuller – 

Last week, Republican Lieutenant Governor candidate Stephanie Trussell running with Darren Bailey for governor returned to where she grew up – near the corner of Washington and South Pulaski in Chicago’s Garfield Park neighborhood on the city’s west side.  

 
“I’m running with state Senator Darren Bailey to RESTORE the great state of Illinois,” Trussell, now living in Lisle Illinois, told reporters.
 
“Before I get started with my remarks, I want you to take a good look around you to see what is going on in our neighborhoods. We have boarded up businesses. There is trash on the streets and graffiti everywhere,” she said.
 
“This is not the Chicago of my childhood.  Many of you know I grew up on the west side of Chicago. I proudly refer to it as the ‘Best side’ of Chicago,” she said.”I was 15 when I got my second job at a grocery store that was owned by my best friend’s dad. Mr. Martin’s family owned a chain of Pick n’ Pay grocery stores. I worked at the location on 15th and Springfield. My other best friend’s dad Mr. Sullivan, owned a grocery store on 15th and Kostner.”

There were a lot of locally owned businesses on the west side back then, she said.

“They were run by people who lived here, who went to church with us, and whose kids went to our schools. Our streets were clean, and we took pride in where we lived.  We had a strong sense of community.  We worked local. We shopped local, and we looked out for each other,” Trussell said.
 
“After cashing my paycheck as a teen I could walk four blocks and spend my money here. My favorite major retail stores were on Madison between Pulaski and Karlov. I never had to leave my community to shop.  There was a McDonald’s and a Burger King right there and Walgreens was there.”
 
Trussell went on to share her experiences growing up in the Chicago she knew.

“My mom would send us to Debbie’s beauty school to get our hair pressed and curled. The building had beautiful architecture outside and a grand marble staircase. The building is still there but it’s surrounded by abandoned businesses.

 
“As a teenager I attended dance parties at the Keyman’s Club just west of here. My sister and I were regulars at the skating rink near Chicago Ave. and Pulaski. Seven days a week I was either riding the Pulaski bus or walking down Keeler.” 
 
But that Chicago no longer exists, she said.
 
“But what I have just described is a museum of yesterday. Today in addition to the abandoned buildings and the trash on our streets, control crime is out of control.  As a teenager, I would work late at McDonald’s in Maywood and use public transportation to get home. I never felt scared on the train or even when I was walking from the Pulaski el stop. I would even take short naps and my only fear was oversleeping and missing my stop.

“Today taking the el train can mean taking your life in your hands. Unfortunately, the redline is red with blood. Just ask the family of the 29-year-old dad who was on a late-night train because he was working extra shifts, trying to earn extra money for his daughter’s birthday party. He was shot and killed on his way home.

 
“Everything is getting worse here.
 
“Look at what’s happening in our schools.
 
“I attended Our Lady of Lourdes Grade School which was located on 15th Keeler. After graduation I went to Lourdes High School near 56th and Pulaski.
 
“My friends in my neighborhood attended bustling Chicago Public schools, some offered robust trade school training. Their high schools were also athletic powerhouses.

“Today nearly a third of city schools are less than half full.

 
“Manley High School has room for 1,300 students, but only about 64 kids are in class. Only 2 percent of the kids can read at grade level.

“In Chicago Public Schools fewer than one in five third-graders meet state standards for reading and math.

 
“JB Pritzker and his pals are failing kids and failing neighborhoods like this.
 
“We must stop the destruction of our communities.  We must stop the crime. We must bring back the jobs. And we must end the back-scratching corruption that allows this to go on.  I grew up on the westside and I always identify as a westsider. The westside is where I formed my family values and I will fight for the people in neighborhoods like this.”

Trussell said she and Bailey “will bring back hope to Garfield Park and all the forgotten neighborhoods of Chicago.”

 
● We will work with the community to make streets safer.
● We will create enterprise zones to help black businesses.
● And we will provide parents and families choices other than the failing government schools.
 
“The sad truth for people like me is this: Our leaders do not care about us. JB Pritzker does not care about Garfield Park. JB Pritzker does not care about the suffering outside of his billionaire bubble. The only way to bring change is to fire JB Pritzker. 

The midterm elections  are Tuesday, November 8, 2022 including the Illinois governor’s  race.  Keep following Illinois Review for the latest news.

Mark Weyermuller also known as “man on the street” is a small business person, retired real estate professional, law & order supporter, tax payer advocate, and conservative activist in Chicago. He is a citizen journalist, frequent guest on talk radio, speaker at public hearings, and regular contributor to Illinois Review. 

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1 COMMENT

  1. Nice article. The city of Chicago is overrun with crimes, violence, and Education is suffering. Her testimony is powerful and heartfelt. For years my family would ride the train from Mendota to Union Station and enjoy the water taxi.
    The last time I was there my dad was at Northwestern for medial reasons. It was right after the covid lockdown. The city streets were boarded up, sirens sounding everywhere, and a burning building. I’m done with Chicago. Pritzker and Lightfoot are going the wrong way. Law and order must becrestored. And what’s with SB818 and SB814? I’m voting RED.