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Cook Democrats retain Berrios as chairman
By Ted Cox | Daily Herald Staff
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Published: 3/4/2010 12:01 AM

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The Cook County Democratic Central Committee re-elected Joseph Berrios as party chairman Wednesday.

The vote was unanimous for the county board of review commissioner and assessor candidate. Yet what was surprising is he was nominated by Chicago Alderman Toni Preckwinkle, the party nominee for county board president.

Preckwinkle is an avowed progressive, while Berrios is more of a party regular, but she said it was more than just a gesture of Democratic unity.

"I've been a committeeman for 18 years, and it's only been since Joe was chairman, the last couple of years, that the party has really pushed for inclusion in our nominees and in our leadership," Preckwinkle said. "And I think that's tribute to Joe's leadership. He's pushed hard to make the party as inclusive as possible."

"We've been working hard together," Berrios said, "and we're going to stick together in the Democratic Party in order to be victorious in November."

Unity, however, wasn't unique to the Democrats Wednesday. Cook County Republicans re-elected Palos Park's Lee Roupas as chairman unopposed at an evening meeting in Chicago.

Berrios also was authorized to launch a major voter registration project to build Democratic rolls before the general election.

Democratic suburban committeemen also voted Oak Park state Sen. Donald Harmon as suburban vice chairman in what proved to be a unanimous vote. He replaces Franklin Park Mayor Barrett Pederson in the post.