The Decline of Daley?
If you ever wanted to see a sign of Mayor Daley’s waning influence, it’s in the mayoral candidates’ responses to the drivers getting stranded on Lake Shore Drive during the blizzard. (Hat tip to CapFax)
“If reports that Mayor Daley was not involved in the actual decision making on the city’s response are true, that’s a disappointment, ”Carol Moseley Braun said through a spokeswoman.
Referring to the now internationally-notorious traffic mess along the lakefront, Emanuel said in a written statement: “We need to get to the bottom of what happened last night on Lake Shore Drive — with hundreds of passengers stranded for hours, it’s clear that there were mistakes made that we can never let happen again. And we need a comprehensive review to determine what went wrong and what went right throughout the city.”
Granted, no one running for Mayor was going to say “Listen, if those idiots couldn’t be bothered to recognize that a highway RIGHT NEXT TO THE GODDAMN LAKE might have some problems during the third biggest snow storm in the history of the city of Chicago they should have just been left there to freeze!”, but there was a time no one would consider taking potshots, even as relatively tame as Rahm’s, at Daley.
Seems like those with money in the game are banking on the assumption that Daley just doesn’t have much muscle left.
A top-level City Hall meeting aimed at ending the dispute over financing the stalled O’Hare expansion project was abruptly canceled Thursday by the CEOs of United and American airlines, the mayor’s press secretary said.
City officials said they initially thought cancellation of the meeting this afternoon between Mayor Richard Daley, United CEO Jeffery Smisek and American CEO Gerald Arpey was due to the blizzard that socked the Chicago region two days ago.
But the airlines appear to be stalling on Daley’s demand that they bring new proposals to the table to jump-start the construction of new runways at O’Hare International Airport.
“At this point, the mayor has begun to wonder about the sincerity of their efforts to meet with him,” said press secretary Jacquelyne Heard. Daley even offered to see them on a Sunday, she said.
Daley has tried to set up alternative dates, offering four or five options, all of which were rejected, leading Daley to believe the delay is intentional, Heard said.
The cold reality is that people know Daley’s not going to be around long enough to get revenge against those who do him wrong now. That means that even the people who don’t want to do him wrong have to when circumstances call for it (a la Rahm’s statement). That said, the last arrow in Daley’s quiver is that of public opinion. Although he may be kind of damaged goods after the more idiotic responses to the blizzard, if Daley’s going to have any clout left it’s going to come from people who appreciate his accomplishments (and how they are indicative of his love of this city and his knowledge of what makes it work). Might be too late though, we’ll see…
- Welcome to Chicago, Rahm. You must be new around here. (preaprez.wordpress.com)
- A plant in the W.H.? – Daley: Rahm’s keeping tabs on me (politico.com)
- Blizzaster 2011: Lake Shore Drive Open, Side Streets Next. Where Was Daley? (chicagoist.com)