Candidate Profile: Dr. Jeffrey Leef
Jeffrey Leef wants to be the face of change in Illinois’ 7th Congressional District.
The River Forest physician is gearing up for a second run against U.S. Rep. Danny Davis (D-IL) .
“My question to voters again will be the question of have their lives in the district improved in any significant way over the last 20 years,” Leef told the West Cook News. “When we talk about the change this community needs and deserves, that’s what we’re really talking about. That’s where it all begins and ends.”
Leef plans to also make education, job creation and the staggering homicide rate of young black males in the district a focus of of his campaign.
"The basis for everything revolves around education and having school choice,” Leef said.
Leef has been named director of interventional radiology trauma services for the new University of Chicago Trauma Center.
“I think the foundation for every community to build on lies in education,” he said. "When you don’t have the choice of good schools, too often you’re destined to live a life of not getting decent jobs and having fewer opportunities. You combine all this and it’s like a powder keg that's leading to all the violence we’re seeing.”
Leef said the onus is now on residents to demand change while understanding that it won’t come from politicians committed to simply doing the right thing.
“Career politicians tend to do what’s best for them, and that’s all that concerns them,” he said. "I would impose term limits, and we also need to do away with this one-party system, especially in Chicago, of no one taking on this career politicians.”
The 76-year-old Davis was elected to Congress in 1996. His current term runs through Jan. 3, 2019.
Leef said his campaign will be grassroots in nature and, unlike Davis, he doesn’t plan to take any campaign contributions from special interest groups, like insurance, telecommunication or pharmaceutical companies.
“You can’t have the same person in office year after year and have the interest of the people at heart,” Leef said. “You have to be willing to pass the baton.”