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Hynes joins race for U.S. Senate

September 15, 2003

BY JIM RITTER Staff Reporter

Being the son of a power broker gave Illinois Comptroller Dan Hynes a head start in politics.

But when Hynes formally announced his candidacy for the U.S. Senate on Sunday, he talked more about his Irish immigrant grandfather.

Hynes said his grandfather worked at Dearborn Chemical for 40 years, "and while he may not have had a high school diploma, he had a work ethic as strong as oak." Hynes spoke to several hundred supporters at Local 134, the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers.

Hynes' father, Tom Hynes, was the longtime Cook County assessor. Hynes said his father will be a "key adviser and strong supporter" in his bid for the Democratic nomination. Hynes' parents shared the stage, along with his wife, Christina, and campaign co-chairmen John Stroger, the Cook County Board president, and county Commissioner John Daley.

Hynes criticized President Bush for spending billions in Iraq, "while cities and communities across America struggle." Hynes said Washington should invest "at least a dollar here at home for every dollar spent to improve Iraq."

At a news conference after the announcement, Hynes said he has reservations about Bush's $87 billion request for military and intelligence operations in Iraq and elsewhere.

"We didn't have a plan to finish the job," Hynes said.

He supports Bush's middle class tax cuts but would repeal cuts for "the wealthiest of the wealthy." He supports abortion rights and the death penalty and opposes same-sex marriage.

Hynes supports tax breaks for corporations that keep or create manufacturing jobs in the United States and opposes trade agreements "that ship American jobs overseas." He backs federal funding for 100,000 new teachers and would reform the No Child Left Behind Act, which he called a "bureaucratic mess."

Other announced or possible Democratic candidates include state Sen. Barack Obama of Chicago, millionaire investor M. Blair Hull, former Chicago School Board President Gery Chico and Cook County Treasurer Maria Pappas.

Pappas has pushed back her anticipated entry past the Oct. 1 target she set a few weeks ago. She said Sunday she plans to register as a candidate "sometime before Dec. 8."

Contributing: Lynn Sweet


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