Operating Engineers Local 150 endorsed Congressman Chuy Garcia for mayor — Here's why

A local union with a history of spending big on political campaigns endorsed Congressman Chuy Garcia for mayor.

Operating Engineers Local 150 has about 23,000 members, including those who run cranes and backhoes at construction projects.


A union spokesman said Chicago's 40 percent increase in homicide since 2019, when Mayor Lori Lightfoot took office, is a big reason so few new construction projects are underway.

"The perception of Chicago as unsafe is hurting our prospects for economic development. You need only look at the skyline, you know. Five years ago, there were over 60 tower cranes in the city of Chicago. It was the most in the country. And now there are a handful in the West Loop, but private development has entirely dried up," said Ed Maher, IUOE Local 150.

The Local 150 spokesman praised Congressman Garcia's pledge to improve morale in the Chicago Police Department, and to fill hundreds of currently vacant positions in CPD. 

He said the union might contribute a million dollars or more to Garcia's campaign, and would urge other unions to back him as well.