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The Weekend Desk Report

For completists, there was no column on Friday.

"Chicago is heading into what could be one of its most unpredictable mayoral elections ever," the Sun-Times reports.

"Not only is it anyone's guess which two candidates will wind up in the expected runoff, but it's not even clear when we will know which two get to advance to that second round.

"I've never had anything like this before. It's kind of like the Super Bowl," 47th Ward Democratic Committeeman Paul Rosenfeld said of the wide open races for mayor, city treasurer and his ward's City Council seat.

How is it like the Super Bowl? The Super Bowl features just two teams whose identities are clearly known. It's actually nothing like the Super Bowl.

And yet, because someone made a pleasing-sounding analogy, the Sun-Times actually used it in its headline - and extended the analogy in a way I'm sure they thought was clever, but really isn't: "Kickoff In Mayoral 'Super Bowl' Days Away - But Expect It To Go Into Overtime."

That also doesn't make sense, because Tuesday is more like the final minute of the game, not the kickoff, and then the paper describes moving into a second round and . . . you get the point. Just be smarter.

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The Sun-Times piece is accompanied by a graphic including results from a poll conducted last month. Given that it's February 23rd, that poll's findings are really old, considering how much has happened since then. And it's methodology was questionable to begin with.

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The Tribune is definitive in its approach: "In the most crowded, wide-open race for Chicago mayor in modern history, 14 candidates are scrambling in the final days to push their supporters to the polls amid concerns about a lack of voter interest and the possibility of low turnout."

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On the candidates, the Trib says (boldfaces mine) . . .

"[Bill Daley] has skipped most of the dozens of candidate forums and even backed out of a televised debate, leading to criticism that he's running a Rose Garden campaign and not interacting with voters.

"The only public event Daley's campaign disclosed ahead of the final weekend of campaigning was a scheduled 20-minute visit to his Lincoln Park field office. By contrast, other candidates released detailed schedules with scores of visits to early voting centers, churches and 'L' stops."

Toni Preckwinkle has also kept a mostly closed schedule and mostly avoided reporters for the last month, as I understand it.

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"Mildred Harris, founder of God First Ministries and supporter of former Mayor Richard M. Daley, sparked the 'Be Fair to Toni' rally with a fiery invocation that urged the almighty to lift up 'a virtuous woman of God who you predestined for greatness before the foundation of the Earth.'"

Yikes.

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"Just hours before Preckwinkle's event, [Lori] Lightfoot and [Susana] Mendoza took the unusual step of issuing a joint attack, with a statement drawing attention to a previous Chicago Tribune report that the county board president misled the public about when she learned of sexual harassment allegations against her former chief of staff, whom she later fired. The move clearly was aimed at women voters.

"Anybody who calls themselves a progressive, anybody who is hosting a fundraiser now, saying 'be fair to Toni,' be fair to the women in the workplace and lead and take their complaints about sexual harassment much more seriously," Lightfoot said. "Toni's failed on every measure on that issue when she had the opportunity to lead, and I think it was important for us to remind people that is her track record."

Lightfoot is not totally wrong.

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"[Garry] McCarthy often strikes a progressive tone on police and race issues at candidate forums, calling out systemic racism in Chicago. But in seeking votes at the FOP hall, McCarthy sought to set himself apart as pro-cop by defending last year's police-involved South Shore shooting of popular barber Harith Augustus - an incident that generated public protests in the African-American community.

"'I want you to think back to the summertime when that poor innocent barber was pulling a gun on the officer, there was exactly one candidate who said it was a justified shooting,' McCarthy said, pointing to himself.

"He also criticized the consent decree that places oversight of Chicago police reforms with a federal judge, saying it is 'not a good thing for this city.'"

He's wrong. The consent decree is exactly what this city needs, and it was put into place after a U.S. Justice Department investigation into the practices of the Chicago Police Department largely under McCarthy. But then, McCarthy left behind a federal consent decree at his last stop in Newark, New Jersey, too.

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"A student [at a forum] asked the candidates how they can be trusted. [Amara] Enyia implicitly criticized Mendoza and others who entered the race after Emanuel.

"Anyone who did not get into the race to challenge Rahm Emanuel when he was there, I cannot believe that all of a sudden you are committed to change just because he's no longer running," Enyia said. "You have to have courage from the beginning to the end."

Of course, Enyia wasn't really running until Chance The Rapper dropped some coin into her bank account. Before that, she had sixty bucks in the bank. So she's being a bit disingenuous, as always.

When Mendoza answered, she used the opportunity to attack Preckwinkle and Daley for skipping the event.

"I didn't run for mayor at first because I was busy taking on Bruce Rauner for the last two years of my life as he was devastating families across Illinois. So many people were silent as I was leading the charge against (Rauner)," Mendoza said, before attacking Daley for being one of Rauner's transition co-chairs. "He's not here because he's unwilling to talk about his record and how we had to fight against it. We don't need any more Daleys, we don't need Toni Preckwinkles, who won't show up to answer questions."

She's lying. It's not like she wanted to complete her state comptroller race before taking on Rahm Emanuel, which was the point of the conversation. If Rahm was running for re-election, she might be his campaign co-chair, just like she was four years ago.

I also don't really care about Daley working on Rauner's transition. Bipartisan transition committees are the rule, not the exception, and that's a good thing. There are far, far worse blots on Daley's record than that - and that's not even a blot.

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"For the most part candidates kept their message positive, with the exception of [Bob] Fioretti who began his opening statement with an attack on Mendoza for being mentored by [Ald. Ed] Burke and having worked in former Mayor Richard M. Daley's administration."

Of course, Fioretti endorsed Emanuel for years ago after attacking him as the devil as an alderman and campaign challenger.

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"Let's face facts," Fioretti said. "What you're going to hear here is a lot of BS."

The most honest thing he's ever said.

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Campaign Twitter

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New on the Beachwood . . .

A Long Look At Lori Lightfoot
This was the week she finally won my vote.

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The Political Odds
Updated to reflect recent developments.

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Living And Dying On The Factory Floor
"Factory life includes stints at a machine shop, a shortening factory, a railroad car factory, a structural steel shop, a box factory, a chemical plant, and a paper cup factory. Along the way there is a wildcat strike, an immigration raid, shop-floor actions protesting supervisor abuses, serious injuries, a failed effort to unionize, and a murder."

All in Southeast Chicago and Northwest Indiana.

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Beachwood Sports Radio: Thanks For Playing, White Sox!
Sign wrong brother-in-law, get outbid by a dollar, lose Manny Machado. Plus: Cubs Still Unlikable; Javy Baez Red Alert; The Ex-Cub Factor; Defenseless Blackhawks; and Bobby Portis Is Pissed.

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Weekend ChicagoReddit

Has anyone tried to install soundproofing between floors in an old 2/3 flat? If so was it worth it? from r/chicago

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Weekend ChicagoGram

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Weekend ChicagoTube

How To Draw A City In One-Point Perspective: Chicago

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Weekend TweetWood
A sampling.

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Mini-thread.

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The Weekend Desk McRibTipLine: Encased in amber ale.



Permalink

Posted on February 23, 2019


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BOOKS - The Ordeal Of The Jungle.

PEOPLE PLACES & THINGS - Wisconsin's Big Marketing Cheese.


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