Bobby Rush makes history as 20 hopefuls wait to fill his congressional seat

Bobby Rush makes history as 20 hopefuls wait to fill his congressional seat
Congressman Bobby Rush at Beyond Woke (Photo by Eddy “Precise” Lamarre for rolling out)

The Illinois 1st Congressional District seat has been held by Bobby Rush for almost three decades. In that time, Rush has been a staunch advocate for his district and extremely vocal about issues involving racism. The former Black Panther recently witnessed the Senate unanimously pass the Emmett Till Anti-Lynching Act. It was officially signed into law on March 29, 2022. Rush has been a longtime supporter and sponsor of the legislation.

The passage of this act took over 100 years and failed each time it was presented to Congress until recently.


The Emmett Till Anti-Lynching Act is named after a young Black boy from the South Side of Chicago who was lynched by White men while visiting his family in Mississippi.

“Unanimous Senate passage of the Emmett Till Anti-Lynching Act sends a clear and emphatic message that our nation will no longer ignore this shameful chapter of our history and that the full force of the U.S. federal government will always be brought to bear against those who commit this heinous act.” said Rush in a statement to the press


Rush will be leaving his seat open at the end of 2022. Twenty candidates have thrown their hat into the ring for the right to fill this seat. A few of the most notable candidates include the son of civil rghts legend Jesse Jackson, Jonathan Jackson; outspoken Alderman Pat Dowell, who represents Chicago’s 3rd Ward; activist Jahmal Cole; and business leader Jonathan Swain.

Each candidate brings their own unique set of skills and accomplishments. The race will be highly contested and is shaping up as one for the record books.

Rush leaves some big shoes to fill and some amazing accomplishments to match. The full list of the candidates is below.

Kirby Briggins
Chris Butler
Jahmal Cole
Jacqueline Collins
Steven DeJoie
Pat Dowell
Cassandra Goodrum
Jonathan Jackson
Terre Layng Rosner
Marcus Lewis
Dee Nix
Karin Norington-Reaves
Ameena Nuur Matthews
Robert Palmer
Nykea Pippion McGriff
Stephany Rose Spaulding
Howard Spiller
Jonathan Swain
Michaell Thompson
Charise Williams

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