Washington, DC: March 7, 2015: Of the many choices in endorsing candidates for the March 15 primary, the Chicago Tribune editorial board wrote that the decision for Congress in the 8th District of Illinois “isn’t close at all” and that the “Tribune endorses [Raja] Krishnamoorthi” for the seat to represent the voters of the northwest Chicago suburbs.
“Krishnamoorthi’s amalgam of business and government experience makes him the best candidate, hands down,” the Chicago Tribune editorial board stated. “A Harvard Law School grad who lives in Schaumburg, he’s been a deputy state treasurer and an assistant attorney general. He’s president of two high-tech firms focused on military security and renewable energy. Those overlapping experiences give him a valuable perspective on how government policy affects businesses and workers.”
The Chicago Tribune endorsement makes it a clean sweep of Chicago-area newspaper endorsements for the progressive Democrat Krishnamoorthi following the earlier endorsements from the Chicago Sun-Times and the Daily Herald, the largest suburban newspaper in the Chicago area.
“We were impressed with Krishnamoorthi’s command of specifics about the tax code and the Affordable Care Act — and even more impressed when he emailed us after our meeting to correct himself on a minor point,” the Chicago Tribune editorial board wrote. “We like that he’s already scoped out opportunities to join in bipartisan initiatives on criminal justice reform and alternative energy. We agree with his maxim that government must do everything ‘faster, cheaper, smarter.’”
Raja Krishnamoorthi, the former deputy state treasurer of Illinois, an Indian American Democrat, who had lost to Rep. Tammy Duckworth in the Democratic primary for Congress in 2012, has announced his bid to join the fray to take the seat one more time. The 41-year-old Indian American has been campaigning to succeed Duckworth in Congress as the representative for the 8th District in the northwest suburbs of Chicago. Duckworth has declared her candidacy to the US Senate from the state of Lincoln.
The United Food and Commercial Workers, Local 881, has endorsed Raja Krishnamoorthi. In their endorsement, Ronald Powell, President, Local 881 and UFCW International Vice President said, “Local 881 United Food and Commercial Workers are proud to give Raja Krishnamoorthi our endorsement. Raja is the only candidate in the 8th District race with a working families agenda that offers a significant increase in the minimum wage, equal pay for equal work and guaranteed paid sick leave and maternity leave for workers.”
In the race to replace Tammy Duckworth in Congress, Raja Krishnamoorthi has opened up a double-digit lead. A live poll of 400 likely Democratic voters taken February 9-11 by GBA Strategies asked 8th District voters in the northwest Chicago suburbs which candidate they would vote for if the election were held today.
Krishnamoorthi had the support of 41 percent of voters with State Sen. Mike Noland at 27 percent and Villa Park President Deb Bullwinkel with 5 percent. Undecided voters accounted for 26 percent of the poll. The margin of error was +/- 4.9 percentage points.
Raja said, “I’m encouraged that voters are responding to our message of protecting Social Security and Medicare, fighting for sane gun laws and standing up for policies to help struggling working families.” A capable fundraiser who raised about $1.3 million for his 2012 run, he said in a press release that he wants to continue Duckworth’s advocacy for working families, with a focus on helping more people to succeed in the new economy. I will work hard to provide education and job opportunities so more families can achieve the economic security they need.
According to Krishnamoorthi, “The one issue that continues to resonate with voters is the economic insecurity of the middle class.” There is growing importance, he added, to gain access to jobs that pay a living wage and access to the right kind of jobs in the 21st Century. He said he knows he needs to raise at least as much money as he did in 2012 to win in the March 2016 Democratic primary in what could be a crowded field.
A resident of Schaumburg, Ill., where he lives with his wife, Priya, a doctor at a local hospital, and their sons Vijay, 9, and Vikram, 5, who attend public schools in school District 54, Krishnamoorthi is president of Sivananthan Labs and Episolar, small businesses selling products in the national security and renewable energy sectors.
In 2006, he was appointed by Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan as a Special Assistant Attorney General in her public integrity unit and he served as a member of the Illinois Housing Development Authority. When he ran in 2016 against Duckworth, who had the support of many in the Democratic leadership, Krishnamoorthi lost by a 66.6% to 33.4% margin.
Co-founder of InSPIRE, a nonprofit providing training to Illinois students and veterans in solar technology, he is a former vice chair of the Illinois Innovation Council, a group supporting economic growth and job creation in Illinois.
Krishnamoorthi pointed out that when he served as deputy treasurer of Illinois, where he helped revamp the state’s unclaimed property system by using technology to increase the amount of property returned to taxpayers while cutting the program’s costs. Raised in Peoria, Ill., he has a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering from Princeton University and a law degree from Harvard Law School. Krishnamoorthi clerked for a federal judge in Chicago, became a partner in an Illinois law firm and was an issues director for Barack Obamaâ’s successful United States Senate campaign in 2004.
“We need people in Congress who understand the opportunities provided by the new economy and how to make sure more Americans are prepared to seize them,” the Indian American candidate said in a press release. “That requires practical, pragmatic ideas and far less partisanship and politics. I want to help provide this leadership and ensure that the same opportunities that my family had to escape tough economic times exist for other working families today and into the future,” he said.
“I am excited to have the support of the hardworking men and women of the United Food and Commercial Workers, Local 881,” Raja said. “UFCW, Local 881 represents more than 34,000 members employed in retail food, drug stores and grocery stores. Winning another labor union endorsement shows that my campaign’s message of helping more Americans find good jobs and help grow and strengthen the middle class is resonating with voters throughout the northwest Chicago suburbs.”