J.B Pritkzer: The Clear Choice


Staff Writer Wyatt Zwik

By Wyatt Zwik, Staff Writer

This is the second in a series of opinion pieces by students endorsing gubernatorial candidates ahead of the 2018 primary elections. 

Democratic voters will pick the gubernatorial nominee for their party on Tues., March 20, with the three front runners being J.B Pritzker, Chris Kennedy, and Daniel Biss. Out of these candidates, Pritzker is the clear choice for Democratic voters, providing a safe option and a strong progressive message.

Pritzker is a member of the billionaire Pritzker family, who made it big through investing and entrepreneurship. Despite coming from a wealthy family, Pritzker worked extremely hard to make a living of his own. Along the way, he’s advocated for progressive causes and reforms, something both hardcore Democratic voters and any regular voters can appreciate.

For solid Democratic voters, Pritzker can alleviate any monetary concerns they may have. Since he is capable of fully funding his own campaign and won’t need any support from the state Democratic Committee, Democratic candidates in more competitive districts can count on more funding. Plus, Bruce Rauner, the current Republican governor, is also extremely wealthy. Pritzker is the best option to match Rauner’s money, instead of diverting funds from more contested races.

Also pertaining to money, Pritzker, along with the rest of his family, are avid philanthropists and have influenced Chicago’s development for decades. Landmark parks and university institutions, including the Pritzker Pavillion in Millenium Park, the Pritzker School of Medicine at University of Chicago, and the Pritzker Law School at Northwestern all bare his families name. Pritzker’s avid support of the arts and education show the passion that’s required for the job of governor.

With regards to policy, Pritzker plans to enact various reforms direly needed by the state.

Criminal justice reform is a top priority for Pritzker. To combat the recent gun epidemic, Pritzker will introduce legislation to institute universal background checks on all gun purchases. He also plans to reduce recidivism, meaning reducing amount of released prisoners who find their way back to jail. He will accomplish this through creating economics opportunities for ex-convicts, lowering the amount of mandatory minimum sentencing, and decriminalizing marijuana.

Additionally, Pritzker will help institute drastically needed veterans assistance programs. Veteran nursing homes recently have been hit by a legionnaires outbreak due to poor living conditions. Pritzker plans on instituting mandatory health inspections and routine maintenance to end disease outbreaks.

Pritzker will also support the environmentalist movement, and stand by the provisions in the Paris Climate Accord. This will be done by attracting commercial investments to put Illinois on track for 100% renewable energy and via innovation in clean energy production and transmission.

The other candidates, although all sharing some common ground, just aren’t well equipped to be governor. Biss, a state senator, is running on the populist tinged platform of a “middle-class” governor. However, he won’t appeal to the rest of the state and is only relatively known in his home town area of Evanston. Kennedy, on the other hand, comes from the famed family of president John. F Kennedy. Names can only get someone so far, though. Under Kennedy’s leadership, University of Illinois saw increased tuition, which led to decreased minority enrollment.

Pritzker may have been accused of dealing with corrupt politicians such as ex-governor Rod Blagojovich, who was convicted on federal corruption charges for trying to sell Barack Obama‘s vacant Senate seat after he left office to assume the presidency in 2008; however, Pritzker was neither formally accused nor convicted of any wrong doing.

Pritzker is the only candidate that truly has the best vision for Illinois, mainly due to his passion and love for this great state. This is why voters must choose J.B Pritzker as the nominee for the Democratic Party for the gubernatorial election.