Darren Bailey, who is running for governor, speaks to a crowd in McCook on Sept. 22. (Photo by Jeff Vorva)

Darren Bailey, who is running for governor, speaks to a crowd in McCook on Sept. 22. (Photo by Jeff Vorva)

Bailey vows to repeal SAFE-T Act during stop in McCook

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By Jeff Vorva

Republican candidate for governor Darren Bailey had several hundred “friends” eating out of the palm of his hand in McCook on Sept. 22.

Bailey used the term “friends” countless times during his 15-minute speech at a rally in a huge parking lot across from the McCook Athletic and Exposition building, and they were eating it up when he was haranguing current Gov. J.B. Pritzker for all of the state’s ills. They also enjoyed him verbally kicking around Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot.

But the biggest reaction he got from the crowd was when he declared, “Under my administration, we will repeal the SAFE-T Act.”

House Bill 3653 is known as the Safety, Accountability, Fairness and Equity-Today Act. It was passed in 2021 and is scheduled to take full effect in January 2023.

BAILEY AND COP

Republican governor candidate Darren Bailey (left) poses with a LaGrange police officer before a rally in McCook.

The 700-page bill has many Democrats hailing it for its fairness and many Republicans denouncing it for being easy on dangerous criminals and causing potential harm to citizens in the future.

It’s been a hot topic in the news lately as the political campaigns are heating up for the November election.

Critics accuse Republicans of using scare tactics with the SAFE-T Act to drum up votes. Whether that’s true or not remains to be seen but Bailey scored big-time points with his stance on Sept. 22.

“We must repeal it and we will,” he said. “We will end the practice of letting our violent criminals – even murderers – who are currently being sent back into the streets as they await trial.

“I will protect the victims of crime in the way that our constitution demands. The laws are there. They are simply not being honored. I will not look the other way when victims are being terrorized and exploited by criminals.”

He was on a roll and was not stopping.

“We will increase penalties for those who rob, hijack and commit felonies with illegal firearms,” Bailey said. “We will make sure that law enforcement knows that they have a governor who has their back.”

This was the final stop on a bus tour last week that also featured appearances in Belleville, Quincy, Peoria, Rockford, Crystal Lake, Mundelein, Lisle and Homer Glen.

Bailey’s running mate, Stephanie Trussell, a former radio talk show host in Chicago, was also on the bus tour.

Trussell said she has seen a lot of horror movies, but, “Nothing scares me more than ‘Pritzker II.’”

She said that four years is enough with the current governor.

“If we wake up Nov. 9 and J.B. Pritzker is still our governor, we can’t even imagine what’s going to happen to this state,” she said. “We managed to survive these four years of his failed policies, but we know we can’t take another four years.

“There were 114,000 people who left the state last year. You know if they wake up with what they feel is hopelessness, how many more people will be leaving?”

FIRE PRITZKER

A young girl may not be old enough to vote but she lets her feelings known at the Darren Bailey rally in McCook.

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