Harish I. Patel, a Democratic Party candidate for State Representative in Illinois’ 40th Legislative District, discussed his progressive policy agenda for the communities of Avondale, Logan Square, Albany Park and Irving Park on December 16, 2015 with a room full of local Muslim community leaders.
Patel, who immigrated to Chicago from India when he was just 14 years old and says he is running to bring independent Democratic leadership to the communities of the 40th District, said too many elected officials, including his opponent, who are supposed to stand up against privatization and budget cuts, are often only interested in getting along with the power brokers. The incumbent state representative in his district cannot effectively represent his constituents, because his only priority is to represent his funders, Patel said.
“We need to stand up strongly against the right-wing, destructive agenda of Governor Rauner, which prioritizes corporate interests and resorts to corrupt politics. These anti-people practices have been hurting all of us adversely for a long time,” said Patel.
Patel said he is running this year because he cannot sit back and watch every organization he has worked with to bring resources and support to immigrant communities and young people be devastated by Gov. Rauner’s shortsighted cuts, while the current State Representative fails to effectively fight back. He added that people are in desperate need of real independent and progressive leadership to effectively address their concerns and to move the State of Illinois forward.
“It is another way to infuse new energy and new ideas into the conversation about the future of our State. It is an opportunity to expand the electorate so more voices like mine and yours are heard.”
As a State Representative, Patel insists he will put the needs and concerns of the diverse communities that make up the 40th District first and bring an independent voice to Springfield. He will rally for a fair income tax, in which wealthy and big corporations pay their fair share in taxes, fight back against devastating cuts to social services, support an equitable funding model for public schools, support democratically-elected school boards, and champion fully funding pensions for public employees.
Patel has a strong track record of working on progressive issues as a part of numerous eminent organizations across Chicago, including Southwest Youth Collaborative, Chicago Votes, Illinois Coalition for Immigrant & Refugee Rights, and more. “This rich exposure to public life has prepared me to go to Springfield to bring people together, despite the gridlock, and to work for real solutions for the people of Illinois.”
Local leaders in attendance included Mehrdad Azemun, Seemi Choudry, Aiman Beg, Moin Haque, Asad Jafri, Sana Jafri, Hina Mahmood, Malik Mujahid, Sadiq Patel, Arif Patel, Abdelnasser Rashid, Rafiq Talaty, Sophia Zaman, and Ashfaq Syed. Check out www.harishipatel.com/vote to learn more about his campaign and to register to vote.