Two plan to run against Alvarez
By Abdon M. Pallasch Sun-Times Media April 21, 2012 9:18PM
Updated: May 24, 2012 8:17AM
She was going to get a challenge. Then she was going to get a free ride.
Now Cook County State’s Attorney Anita Alvarez could face two challengers in the Nov. 6 election, but they face long odds at denying her a second term.
The Cook County Republican Party has nominated Lori Yokoyama, an attorney active in civic and charitable groups. The resident of Chicago’s Hyde Park community lost a race for 4th Ward alderman last year.
Civil rights lawyer Christopher Cooper is set to launch his bid as an independent candidate on Saturday. That long-shot effort will require at least 25,000 petition signatures.
Forrest Claypool, a former Cook County commissioner and top aide to Chicago Mayor Richard Daley, had much greater name recognition when he took 32 percent of the vote as an independent running against county Assessor Joe Berrios in 2010.
This election will offer voters three minorities to chose from if all make it on the ballot — Alvarez has Mexican heritage, Yokoyama is Japanese and Cooper is black.
Alvarez ran unopposed in the March 20 Democratic primary election. Chicago Ald. Howard Brookins (21st) launched a short-lived challenge to Alvarez in the primary but ended it after most of his fellow Democratic committeemen endorsed Alvarez for re-election.
Cooper also contemplated a challenge to Alvarez in the primary but at that time was still waiting for his Illinois law license to come through. He has handled several high-profile cases in Illinois courts under special permission from judges and has been licensed for years in the federal courts and other states. He said he now has his Illinois license.