Candidate for Chicago City Council

About the Candidate

Name: Jon-Robert McDowell
DOB: Aug. 8, 1981
Family: Unmarried with no children.
Occupation: Project management
Political Experience:
Campaign Manager for several Aldermanic and State
Representative candidates in the city of Chicago
Elected Steering Committee
Member for North Side Democracy for America (NDFA)
Intern for US Congressman Eliot Engel
Community Organizer Activist and Volunteer

Candidate Statement

I’m Jon-Robert McDowell, and I’m running for Alderman of the 46th Ward.

As the oldest of five children raised by a single mother, I’ve experienced first-hand the unnecessary hardships an ineffective government can place on a family just trying to get by; when my brother was diagnosed with a chronic illness, he was dropped from our insurance, forcing my family to fight against a rigged system that prioritized profits over people. We almost lost everything.
Knowing we weren’t the only family struggling, I swore that one day I’d work to make it easier for families like mine — children should worry about their homework and baseball tryouts, not whether they will eat tomorrow.
Our current Alderman has shown a callous disregard to the challenges we face, prioritizing luxury housing over public education, campaign contributions over basic social services, and is doing little to correct the financial crisis that has put Chicago on the verge of bankruptcy.

I believe we can do better.

I believe in a city that works to build communities of trust and opportunity. I believe in a city that prioritizes public education. I believe in a city that lives in harmony with its police force.

If elected, I will fight to enact a bold progressive agenda that restores power to the people, not just the 1%. It’s time for a $15-dollar minimum wage and progressive tax reform. It’s time we take our place as a leader in renewable energy innovation.
Most critically, we must work together to provide real solutions to Chicago’s financial crisis. Every year the burden of our debt is placed on the shoulders of the middle and working class as taxes go up while basic services are cut. This is the core challenge we face.

On February 26th, join us in the fight for a future that is brighter, equitable, and inclusive of the values that built this great city. My name is Jon-Robert McDowell. I have dedicated my life to fighting for my family. Now I ask for the honor of fighting for yours.

Together, let’s make this city remember how futures are built.

Candidate Q&A

What is your vision for this office?

I am running because I believe in a better Chicago. I believe in a Chicago that can do more for its people, its communities and for the diversity and grit that define the 46th Ward. I believe in a city that cares more for the needs of its people than it does for the demands of corporations, developers or for personal political gain. I am running because I believe we as a Ward and as neighbors are better equipped to lead through experience than those who currently represent us.

What is the most pressing issue facing constituents, and how can you help address it?

Unfortunately, the 46th Ward faces many challenges, and eight years of failed leadership have only made things worse. Too many of my neighbors suffer the devastating effects of poverty, crime, mental health issues and drug addiction, yet continue to see those needs go unaddressed. While others have watched as their property taxes and housing costs are raised year over year, while services get cut and our public schools are shut down. Due to this, we watch as families continue to leave, and businesses continue to close.

However, there is something that ties all these issues together, and that is our city’s poor fiscal management. Of course, we all strive for things like, “better schools, safer streets and more jobs”, however the fact of the matter is that unless we are willing to deal with our massive debt crisis, we will get none of those things.

Our city is tumbling into bankruptcy, and we must act quickly if we are to stop it. Most recent studies show that by 2045, the people of Chicago will have contributed 17 billion dollars to a fiscal crisis that will be no closer to being solved. Our debt and pension fund crisis will continue to drag this city to its knees. It is time to push back on the failed theory of “Trickle Down Economics”; a concept that has been repeatedly proven to only service the 1% and leave the rest of us with its devastating effects.

Government can work for the people, it was created to work for the people–I want to put it to work again. We won’t solve our debt crisis alone, but with all options made available to us. It is time to end wishful thinking and get down to solving the biggest problem facing our city and our ward.

As Alderman I would call for:

  • A city ordinance requesting federal and state assistance to mitigate the effects of our growing debt crisis on the city’s future thereby improving life in our ward.
  • Legitimate progressive tax reform, and that community resources, public services, employment and educational opportunities should be the priority of future budgets.
  • A swift implementation of a $15 minimum wage increase. Everyone benefits when the power of the purse rests with the people, not the 1%. The real job creators are the American consumers.
  • Corporate accountability instead of the backroom deals that have allowed them to plunder our city for strictly personal gain. Tax incentives and agreements should stipulate that without proper proof of their benefit to the city’s economy and quality of life, those corporations will not be eligible for tax breaks that leave the working people of my Ward to pay the bill.