Chicago mayoral candidates Paul Vallas and Brandon Johnson are off to the races with little more than a month before the April 4 runoff election.
Vallas, a former Chicago Public Schools CEO, is leading in Tuesday’s election with 34% of the vote. Johnson, a Cook County commissioner, is at 20%, according to unofficial results from the Chicago Board of Election Commissioners.
Johnson joined “Chicago Tonight” for a one-on-one conversation. Vallas declined to appear on the show Wednesday.
Chicago police Superintendent David Brown on Wednesday announced his resignation, effective March 16. Both Vallas and Johnson previously said they would immediately fire Brown if elected mayor.
In finding Brown’s replacement, Johnson said he would look for someone who is tethered to the community and who “understands the unique nature of the city of Chicago.” He said he would start his search in Chicago but would search for the right talent all over the country, if necessary.
Johnson said he would invest in promoting 200 more detectives to focus on solving crimes and ensuring the Chicago Police Department’s consent decree, a court order requiring reform of the agency, is “administered with all due expediency.”
“We have placed too much pressure and responsibility on law enforcement to behave as social workers, counselors, marriage therapists,” Johnson said. “That’s not what law enforcement should be doing. I’m gonna make sure that law enforcement actually gets to do their job.”
Johnson said his public safety plan addresses long-term solutions such as youth development and youth employment.