By Dan Haley
Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle, seldom shy in offering strong opinions, will not be backing convicted felon and former West Side Chicago alderman Isaac (Ike) Carothers in his bid to replace Earlean Collins on the county board next year.
Collins is retiring from the 1st District seat which represents the West Side, Oak Park and other areas on the county board. Among those who have recently filed to run in the Democratic primary is Carothers. He was convicted and jailed for bribery, mail fraud and tax fraud in connection with accepting $40,000 in home improvements in exchange for backing zoning changes to allow a large residential and commercial development in the Galewood neighborhood of his ward.
Asked by the Sun-Times this week her opinion of having two convicted felons running for county board Preckwinkle said the choice will be made by voters. But while she had positive words about Al Sanchez, who is running from a district on the Southeast side, she was clear about her views on Carothers. "I never got along well with Alderman Carothers. … I don't intend to support former Alderman Carothers."