Jess “Chuy” Garcia, a candidate for mayor of Chicago, submitted over 5,000 pages of petition signatures in less than three weeks.
However, it is reported that the one responsible for gathering those signatures was a sexual offender. The Garcia campaign has recently undergone some shifts.
Garcia, who was just reelected to the U.S. House of Representatives, immediately began campaigning for mayor. Campaign workers and volunteers made a frantic effort to collect signatures on petitions over the following weeks so he could formally file to run for mayor.
It is learned that one of the collectors, 63-year-old James Munoz Sr., is on Illinois’s sex offender registry. In 2017, he was convicted of aggravated criminal sexual abuse of a child younger than 14.
We discovered that Munoz gathered the 16 pages of signatures that Garcia submitted to the Chicago Board of Elections. The campaign manager for Garcia has stated that the number is less than 1% of the total signatures.
It is unclear, how Munoz obtained these signatures
In addition to additional restrictions, registered sex offenders are not allowed to come within 500 feet of any place where children might be present, such as a school or park.
After being asked about Munoz, Garcia’s campaign manager responded, “he is not and was never a member of our staff nor on our payroll.” As Garcia’s campaign manager continued, they will ensure that Munoz has no further contact with the campaign.
This, however, is not the first red sign in Garcia’s election campaign. Paul Vallas, Garcia’s mayoral opponent, lashed out at the congressman last week for accepting donations from cryptocurrency tycoon Sam Bankman-Fried, who is now facing charges.
According to Garcia’s campaign manager, many people shared the online petitions with their networks before submitting them to the Board of Elections. Meanwhile, the mayoral election is heating up, with Garcia receiving support from numerous prominent figures.