>REACT: Daley saves the day … for a change


In the case of the “pate de foie graz ban bungle” it took Chicago Mayor Rich Daley almost a year to knock out the “city’s silliest ordinance,” as he called it.

Well, Hizzonor was not about to have to wait another year to keep his “kids” in the City Council from another silly action. This time the Mayor stepped in.

Just about the time the Council was to vote to order the White House not to invade Iran (a truly silly thing, to be sure), the Mayor politely asked them refrain from passing the legislation.

Of course, even a polite request will get immediate obedience from the submissive aldermen. They well know that if you reject even the gentlest suggestion from Hizzonor, you will be tossed under the bus – and the Mayor has lots of buses.

He said he was concerned that such a resolution would hurt the presidential candidacy of favorite son Barak Obama. He does not want to upset the first time ever the Chicago political machine will get its own president. I mean … they have had several governors and a few senators rise from the ranks of the Chicago machine, but never a president.

This is real important, too. Everyone knows that the U.S. Attorney Patrick Fitzgerald has the Mayor’s brow in the prosecutorial crosshairs. Despite his promise to keep Fitzgerald, you can bet that in one of his first acts a President, Obama will sit with Illinois Senator Dick Durbin to pick a replacement – some one not so … ah … aggressive? Someone more inclined to restore the tradition of “selective prosecution.” <– Meaning no machine pinky rings. I am not sure if the Mayor’s reason for opposing the ban is sincere, or just an excuse. Not sure how the resolution would hurt the campaign, especially since Obama is more of an appeasement dove than a militant hawk.

My suspicion is that the Mayor is kyboshing the ban because it really is silly AND because it is really a public relationship attack on President George Bush. Remember, Daley and Bush are buds. And until he surrenders the Oval Office, good ole pal George has the power of the pardon. In the spirit of Illinois’ unique brand of bipartisanship, Daley is already lobbying for clemency for the currently incarcerated George Ryan. Since springing Ryan from the hoosgow would be an incredibly bad and stupid thing, I say there is at least a 50/50 chance Bush will do it.

Whatever his motive, Delay has ended two Council sillinesses in one week. While I deplore the autocratic process, at least this time the Mayor really did save the “kids” from more silly mischief.
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