WTTW’s 2016 Voters’ Guide to the Primary is an online resource designed to inform voters about the candidates running for Cook County office in the March 15 election.
Every candidate running for a Cook County office was given two minutes to tell voters where they stand on the issues, why they feel they are best qualified and what they intend to do if elected or re-elected. The messages were recorded at the WTTW studios at no cost to the candidates. The Voters’ Guide is an online version of Candidate Free Time, pioneered by WTTW in the 1992 race for U.S. Senate. This year, we are proud to partner with the League of Women Voters of Cook County to give voters this guide to candidates for Cook County office.
About this office: State's Attorney
The Cook County State's Attorney's Office prosecutes crimes committed in Cook County, the largest consolidated court district in the U.S.; serves as legal counsel for Cook County government agencies; and serves as legal counsel for all Cook County public officials.
About this candidate:
Name: Donna More
Born: January 1958
Family: Married, one daughter
Political experience: First-time candidate
What is your vision for this office?
I believe that the State’s Attorney of Cook County plays two important roles.
The first is to prosecute crime no matter who commits it. That means being tough on crime without regard to race, uniform, politics or money. The job requires a dogged determination to remain wide-eyed about evidence … and blind to outside influence.
The other is to take an activist role in the effort to reduce crime. I see the State’s Attorney’s Office as a leader of the criminal justice system. It needs to work with communities to establish priorities, help put career offenders behind bars, and see to it that we give second chances to people who simply make mistakes.
In order to live up to these missions, the public has to have faith in the State’s Attorney to do the right thing; to stare down outside pressures; and to be straightforward, honest and prompt about the job. Finally, we can’t build confidence if we aren’t transparent.
I intend to rebuild confidence in the system with a three pronged approach: reform policies and procedures in State’s Attorney’s office (including new methods of dealing with police-involved shootings), reduce gun violence, and root out public corruption.
What is the most pressing issue facing Cook County, and how can you help address it?
The human, social, moral and financial consequences of gun violence in our community are intolerable. There were 2,553 shootings and 442 murders in Chicago last year – tragedies that cost the lives of loved ones and $2.5 billion in commerce, healthcare, tax revenue, and future investment.
Of the guns used in these crimes, 90 percent were obtained illegally from traffickers or through illegal transfers. So I’m going after the sources. We’ll deploy grand juries to work our way up the food chain and disrupt the market for illegal guns. We’ll work with the County Circuit to open a dedicated gun court where prosecutors, judges and law enforcement can convene to make sure we’re putting the right people behind bars.
We’ll support Highland Park style legislation to limit semi-automatic weapons and tighten requirements for registration and reporting.
Finally, we intend to work with the community – including all 128 law enforcement agencies in the County – to establish a countywide safety alliance that engages every neighborhood, parish and business in the effort to reduce this deadly plague on our County.
I want to be state’s attorney because the most important thing a lawyer can do is fight for justice. I am running for the job because, like most of you, I’m fed up. I’ve lived in Cook County virtually all my life and I can’t stand it …
When people we recruit to work in our law firm ask if it is safe for their families to live in Chicago.
When our 11-year-old won’t watch the 6 p.m. news because it is too scary.
When our casualty rate is higher than Afghanistan.
When it takes 8 years and $2 million to charge a well-connected white guy with manslaughter for a one-punch fatality … and only 48 hours to charge an unconnected black guy with first-degree murder for the same offense.
When I see the pain and anguish of neighbors terrorized by gun violence and disappointed by politicians who talk a lot … but don’t do very much.
And I am really bothered that incumbent Anita Alvarez has become a national spectacle for her failures in office … and Kim Foxx, my other opponent, does not have jury trial experience on the toughest crimes and owes her political life to the machine.
So here’s what you need to know about me. I am not a politician looking for a job. I’m a former prosecutor and experienced lawyer looking to do a job.
I’m the only candidate in the race who was a federal prosecutor.
I’m the only candidate in the race who doesn’t have a political boss, who will tell truth to power, and who isn’t afraid to follow evidence wherever … and to whomever … it leads.
And I’m the only candidate in the race with a plan to reform the system, handle police shootings, disrupt the market for illegal guns, and go after public corruption.
My name is Donna More. If you are as fed up as I am with the status quo, go to the polls on March 15 and make me the next Cook County State’s Attorney.
Your vote will send a message to the power brokers that you want to see an end to politics as usual and that you want a chief prosecutor who is tough on crime, no matter who commits it.
See more State's Attorney candidates
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