On February 15, I released a new TV advertisement. The ad is on Chicago's major TV stations during their 10:00 news broadcasts.
The ad draws on this campaign's major themes: that the City of Chicago has fostered an oppressive climate for residents in the neighborhoods, and that we have the opportunity, on February 22, to do something about it.
Chicagoans can take this city in a new direction. We know that, yes, it's time, Chicago is ready for reform.
I have raised three beliefs central to this campaign:
We know the City is trying to balance its budget on the backs of Chicagoans.
A parking boot for two tickets older than one year, a $100 fine for a right-hand turn at red light camera intersections, $5 to park downtown, $1.50 in the neighborhoods, tens of thousands of dollars in property taxes to keep open a business, a whole ordinance to get an awning.
My vision for reform means that we change the antagonistic relationship between city government and residents. Neighborhood leaders and community organizations deserve seats at the table with business executives and elected officials.
Under my administration, neither parents struggling for a library nor mental health advocates for continued service will have to organize civil disobedience actions to get a meeting with the mayor's office.
Poor and working-class people bear the brunt of high unemployment, foreclosures, and crime, but, under a del Valle administration, they alone will not bear the sacrifices to address these problems.
We know pay-to-play still exists.
When the top three contributors to an opponent's campaign have also been clients of his lobbying firm, then you know that pay-to-play is alive and well in this city.
If we are going to root out corruption in our city contracts, then we have to start right now. We have to think less about campaign viability and more about Chicago's viability under the status quo. We are seeing, right now, the consequences of corrupt politics on our city budget.
We can make Chicago a world-class city by setting an example for how a corrupt government cleans itself up and inspires confidence in its residents. We can set a new standard for what makes a city truly great.
We know people across the city, particularly in African-American and Latino neighborhoods, struggle too hard to maintain small businesses, find jobs, and get services they need.
Economic segregation is a serious problem. For this city to rise above the worst parts of its history, we must ensure that summer employment programs provide jobs in every neighborhood, that we invest in affordable housing in every neighborhood, that we provide public health services to residents in every neighborhood.
Our city can be one, not by way of rhetoric, but through leadership and organizations that bring together our city's residents and address problems together.
This is what's at stake in this election, and this is what I am about.
For more information on Miguel del Valle, please visit www.delvalleformayor.com.
Watch Miguel win the floor at a recent mayoral forum.
Follow Miguel del Valle on Twitter: www.twitter.com/delvalle4mayor