POLITICS: Campaigns

Some longtime Dems supporting Illinois Republican gubernatorial candidate Bruce Rauner

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Associated Press,Illinois,Campaigns,FCC

CHICAGO (AP) — Several well-known Democrats say they're backing Republican Bruce Rauner for governor.

Rauner said Thursday that their support is emblematic of his nonpartisan leadership approach.

The Winnetka venture capitalist spoke at a downtown Chicago hotel flanked by a group of supporters he's billing as "Democrats and Independents for Rauner."

Backers include longtime Democrat and former Federal Communications Commission Chairman Newton Minow. The 88-year-old Minow says he's taking "a leave of absence from my party" to support Rauner because he thinks he can best solve the state's problems.

Other non-Republican backers include former state Sen. James Meeks, who's also senior pastor of Salem Baptist Church of Chicago, and attorney Manny Sanchez, who helped lead President Obama's campaign outreach among Latinos.

Officials with Gov. Pat Quinn's campaign didn't immediately comment.

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