From now until March 20th primary - the race for governor has candidates buying advertising slots and pounding the pavement to get their names in front of voters.
There are several Democrats hoping to unseat Republican Governor Bruce Rauner. Most are slated to attend a forum Wednesday night in Chicago at Second Presbyterian Church on Michigan Avenue. So far, businessmen J.B. Pritzker and Chris Kennedy, State Senator Daniel Biss, anti-violence activist Tio Hardiman and school official Bob Daiber have committed to attend.
Anthony Galloway is the director of civic engagement for Equality Illinois, which is sponsoring the event for Democratic candidates. He says it's important for constituents to hear what those candidates have already done to help promote rights for LBGTQ residents. "So our goal in this activity is to educate our constituents, as well educate the candidates on issues of impact within the LGBTQ community." He says some of the topics will include: "healthcare, obviously - we know that healthcare is an issue that really disproportionately impacts LGBTQ communities. We're going to be talking about trans folks in schools. We're going to be talking about criminal justice."
Galloway says this is a first of its kind forum; he knows of none like it when it comes to governor races across the country. It will be live-streamed to other locations and events across the state, like in Springfield, Carbondale and Peoria. Galloway says he hopes to later have a forum between the eventual Republican and Democratic nominees. As for the Wednesday forum - he suggests those who wish to view from home follow the group on social media and check in around the time it starts.