Illinois governor candidates expected to joust over SAFE-T Act in final TV debate

Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker and his Republican challenger Darren Bailey meet Tuesday night for what's likely their final face-to-face debate.

FOX 32 political editor Mike Flannery asked what some key people around town would like to see them discuss.

West Side pastor Rev. Ira Acree said he wants to hear both candidates discuss crime and schools, which he believes are linked.


"There are certain schools that have all the amenities, but many times on the West Side you go into these high schools, there's no swimming pool, no tech centers and no place for the trades," Acree said. "We've got to have better schools. That has to be talked about as well. That is a panacea for solving the problem of violence in our communities."

"I want to hear fireworks on why Illinoisans are still paying the highest property taxes in the country. Nothing's been done about them. Number two, I want to hear fireworks on crime," said Ted Dabrowski of

The issue of crime played a large role in the previous debate between the two candidates, especially the controversial SAFE-T Act that makes it more difficult for prosecutors and police to convince judges to detain violent offenders before trial.

Darren Bailey called for a repeal, but Pritzker would only say generally that he wants to amend it to "clarify" certain parts of the new law.

"The criminal justice system that Darren Bailey and Republicans are standing up for is one that allows murderers and rapists and domestic abusers to buy their way out of jail, and that's unsafe," Pritzker said.

"The SAFE-T Act must be repealed because it lets violent criminals and murderers out of jail before trial," Bailey said.