Former White House Chief of Staff Bill Daley announced Tuesday that he’s forming an exploratory campaign as he considers a bid for governor of Illinois next year.
The son of legendary Chicago Mayor Richard Daley broke the news in a video on his campaign website. "Let's face it. We're in serious trouble," he says.
"When you look across the country, there's been some encouraging economic news lately. But here in Illinois we have the second-highest unemployment in the country, and the news from Springfield always seems to be bad."
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Daley would challenge incumbent Pat Quinn in the Democratic primary. In a November poll from Democratic-leaning Public Policy Polling, Daley led Quinn 37 percent to 34 percent. Quinn’s approval rating was a paltry 25 percent, making him the least-popular governor in the country.
"We can no longer stand idly by while our pension debt bankrupts our schools and robs our children of a better future," Daley says. "From the stinging injustice of inequality to the painful toll of unemployment, the people of Illinois are paying a perilous price for political failure. . . . We need leadership that gets things done."
Daley was White House chief of staff under President Barack Obama and was secretary of commerce under President Bill Clinton. His brother Richard M. Daley was Chicago mayor from 1989 to 2011.
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