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Posts Tagged ‘Rahm Emanuel

The Decline of Daley?

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The final countdown

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…

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Carol Moseley Braun to Watkins – “You Were on Crack!”

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The video really speaks for itself, so please watch it.

Vodpod videos no longer available.

Carol Moseley Braun to Watkins – “You Were on C…, posted with vodpod

Somewhere I’m sure Malcom X is very proud of the solidarity in Chicago’s black community.

Watkins fired the first shot accusing Moseley Braun of leaving public life for several years.

“I did not even know the woman lived in the city of Chicago because I haven’t heard her voice on the street,” Watkins said.

“Patricia, just because you didn’t know who I was for the last seven years is because you were on crack,” Moseley Braun said.

While Watkins admits she was a drug addict at 19, she says she was never addicted to crack.

“She could be sued for slander,” Watkins said.

Even with the threat of a lawsuit, Moseley Braun is not apologizing for her remarks.

“When someone slaps you like that then you have to tell the truth and that is what I did,” Moseley Braun said.

If you’re not familiar with Watkins, you’re not alone.  She’s been polling at 1%.  Apparently Braun thought that this 1% was so important it was worth it, though…

Written by updowndownup

January 31, 2011 at 3:40 pm

It’s Official and Unanimous – Rahm’s On the Ballot

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Resident

7 out of 7 Illinois Supreme Court Justices agree that Rahm Emmanuel is in fact a resident of Chicago.

The Illinois Supreme Court ruled today that Rahm Emanuel can stay on the ballot for mayor of Chicago,  saying in a unanimous decision that he meets the state’s residency requirements despite spending most of the last year as White House chief of staff.

“The voters deserved the right to make the choice of who should be mayor. And what the Supreme Court said basically, in short, that the voters should make the decicions of who will be mayor,” a victorious Emanuel said after slapping backs and shaking hands with commuters at the Clark and Lake elevated train stop near his downtown headquarters.

“The nice part was to be able to tell the news to voters, because a lot of people had not heard it,” Emanuel said.

The court essentially took the position of the Appellate minority, and by that I mean their position is that the Appellate majority are a bunch of political hacks who wouldn’t know established jurisprudence if it jumped up and bit them square on the ass.  Allahpundit at Hot Air points out:

So harsh is it, in fact, that two justices wrote a separate concurrence criticizing the court for being unduly vicious towards the appellate court. (“[T]he tone taken by the majority today is unfortunate…”)

Surprise surprise, one of the two dissenting concurrences came from Ms. “I Think For Myself and Don’t Care That My Husband Rules the Chicago City Council With an Iron Fist” Justice Burke.  Can’t imagine she likes seeing them get this kind of lashing when all they did was what her husband ordered them to.

Maybe This Whole Thing Was Just What Rahm Needed – Rahm Finally Over 50%

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50%

I don’t know how I missed this, but yesterday there was an interesting poll on CapFax.  It’s a poll from We Ask America, sponsored by the Chicago Retail Merchants Association (so take it for what you will), and it shows not only people overwhelmingly want Rahm on the ballot, but he’s finally crossed over the magic number.  I guess it’s a case of don’t know what you got till it’s gone.

It makes sense, considering Rahm coming off the ballot made people look into the abyss and see there’s no one there they could even imagine wanting as Mayor.  It’s fitting that the number of undecideds gets a significantly bigger bump without Rahm than any of the other candidates.  The upside to this is that if Rahm stays on the ballot, this thing should be over with the primary, which means we won’t have an additional month and a half of this nonsense.

Written by updowndownup

January 27, 2011 at 8:47 am

Illinois’ Own Failed Stimulus Loses Its Funding

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Defunded

Back in January of 2009, hyped up on stimulus-feva, Illinois passed a $31 billion capital bill called “Illinois Jobs Now”.  Today, thanks to the owner of the Chicago Blackhawks and an Illinois Appellate Court a lot of the funding for it is now going…going…gone.

The Illinois Court of Appeals has ruled the General Assembly acted unconstitutionally when it approved funding sources for the state’s $31 billion capital construction program.

The lawsuit that led to Wednesday’s ruling was filed by W. Rockwell Wirtz, better known as Rocky Wirtz. His family is best known as owners of the Stanley Cup Champion Chicago Blackhawks. The foundation of their financial fortune, however, is Wirtz Beverage Illinois, a distributor of alcoholic beverages.

Used to getting their way in Springfield, the Wirtz family was infuriated when the legislature ignored their objections to the liquor tax.

A spokesman for Illinois House Speaker Michael Madigan estimated that the ruling eliminated at least 40 percent of the funding sources devoted to the state’s giant capital construction program.

The decision is available here.

Ultimately this is going to cause some big problems, largely for the same reason that this was found to be unconstitutional.  For some stupid reason when the package was passed the spending and revenue portions were put in separate bills.  The revenue portion, the part that was found to be unconstitutional, was found to be so as it violates Illinois’ Single Subject Rule.  The standard for this rule is whether there’s a “natural and logical” connection between the different aspects of a bill.  Had the spending and revenue portions been part of the same bill, the funding probably could have been sold as the natural and logical connection of funding the capital bill.  Instead, the only thing that connects the provisions in a stand-alone revenue bill is “revenue”, which has already been ruled to be too broad.

This also means that the spending bill is still law.  If Madigan’s projections of this cutting 40% of the capital bill’s funding, that would mean there is now $12.4 billion is newly unfunded spending.  This would erase all of the benefits to the deficit from the tax hike, and add an additional $5 billion to it.  In other words, there is going to have to be another tax hike.  Like, right now.

Considering the reaction to the last tax hike, good luck with that.

A lot of the problem could be dealt with by a stand-alone video gambling bill, but that’s going to be a tough sell.  Video poker, aka “the crack cocaine of gambling”, was a big issue in the last election in just about every Republican-leaning and centrist area of the state.  Most of the new guys ran against video gambling, and the survivors typically ran away from their vote and would be loathe to immediately show that those tacts were bullshit.  It could probably pass, but it’d be a lot rougher than it was last time (and it wasn’t pretty last time).

On top of that, back then the proponents of the package had the myth of jobs and stimulus and whatnot to help sell the bill.  Now they can’t.  Any stimulative effect has long since been priced in, and just as the conservatives expected, Illinois still sucks.  So instead of buying jobs, growth and stability, now it’s just staving off a budget collapse to pay for annoying road construction.

In short, get your popcorn ready.

Response to “And the Ordinary People Said” on Rahm Residency: I Really Hope “Ordinary People” Aren’t This Dumb

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Foolishness

Over at “And the Ordinary People Said” blog on Chicago Now, Marksallen has attempted to string together an argument entitled “Why the Illinois Supreme Court Must Remove Rahm Emmanuel From the Ballot”.  It’s remarkably trite, but I’d like to go through it piece by piece.  I’ll try to avoid being a snob about the parts that don’t even resemble the english language (e.g. “Even in his response to the ruling and throughout this challenge period Rahm Emanuel has offered no respect for the legal anticipated legal opinion versus political opinions saying that it is the ‘public opinion’ that matters over the legal opinions.”) as I’m sure every blogger could be found guilty of such mistakes at some point.

 

His first argument:

A ruling in favor of Rahm staying on the ballot does a disservice to the Federal elected officials, and more specifically The White House staffers who like Rahm went to DC to “serve the President,” and without the same financial status of Emanuel paid two sets of rent for their DC apartments as well as maintaining the costs of sustaining their local residences to the point that whenever they decided to visit their home residence, there was never any confusion of where those federal elected officials or White House staffers could lay their heads. Why should these federal officials and White House staffers pay the expense to sustain both residences to keep their home residence and not Rahm.?

So the argument here is that allowing Rahm on ballot wouldn’t be fair to David Axelrod?  Does this even require a rebuttal?  If so, I guess it would be this: it has absolutely nothing to do with law.  If the people who maintain homes both in Chicago and DC do so because they mistakenly thought they’d need to do so in order to vote in Chicago, that’s 100% on them.  The unspoken premise of this argument is “If someone misunderstands the law and acts based on this misunderstanding, the laws must be applied as per the misunderstanding so that everyone is equally constrained by this individual’s mistake.”  This, obviously, is ridiculous.

And how far does “intent” go when considering the clear “residency” requirements that forced city workers, police and firefighters to actually prove where they laid their heads in order to keep their city jobs?

According to the law, it would go very far.  That said, it’s a lot harder to claim you have an intent to return if you move outside of the city while working in the city.  It’s much easier if you’re working in Washington DC, unless you think that a daily commute from Chicago to Washington DC wouldn’t be all that bad.

Aside from that, even if you take intent off of the table, the Supreme Court is responding to the Appellate decision, which hinged on the word “residency” not meaning “residency”.  The only defense of this aspect of the decision offered was this:

over 30 ordinary citizens offered their objections on Emanuel’s qualifications as a “voter” versus that of a “candidate,”

If we’re going on the law, it wouldn’t matter if every single person in the city of Chicago offered their objections on this subject.

If you look over the rest of Marksallen’s posts, what he’s actually trying to argue becomes much clearer.  He’s arguing that Rahm needs to be off the ballot because Rahm takes votes away from Carol Moseley Braun.

Rahm Off the Ballot – Clusterfuck to Commence Update: Rahm’s Attorneys File Emergency Motion to Supreme Court

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Uh oh

Chicago News Cooperative just reported that the Illinois Appeals Court has overturned the previous ruling on Rahm Emmanuel’s residency, ruling that he’s not legally a resident of Chicago.  More updates to come…

Update I: So the first thing, this was going to go to the Illinois Supreme Court no matter what.  He wouldn’t have gotten the previous rulings in his favor if the powers that be didn’t want him to be the next mayor, so I’d say chances are good this is going to be overturned by the Supreme Court (as they tend to rule as they’re told)

That said, Melissa Clouthier is saying that the Illinois Supreme Court is slow to overturn appellate decisions.  So we’ll see.

Update II: Alright, so supposing Rahm doesn’t get back on the ballot, what does this mean?  He’s got the most support from all 3 racial demographics, meaning there are a lot of free votes for everyone playing the race game.  This means a lot of votes from Braun and a lot of votes for Chico.

This definitely helps Chico a lot.  He’s the only one with the money to be up on the air in any capacity, and he’s got significant support amongst whites and hispanics.  If the ruling stands, this is almost certainly going to mean a runoff between Braun and Chico, barring white people getting comfortable with Braun or Chico somehow learning how to run a campaign that’s anywhere near the level of Rahm’s.

Update III: Thank you Mark Knoller, the ruling is available here.

Update IV: This ruling seems kind of goofy.  So the court rejects the intent to return as qualifying as residency argument, which makes sense.  They also put forward that the definition of “reside” is to actually live there, which makes enough sense.  Where is gets kind of silly is the issue of whether the “business of the United States” argument saves Rahm.

The code reads as such:

Ҥ 3-2. (a) A permanent abode is necessary to constitute

a residence within the meaning of Section 3-1. No elector or spouse shall be deemed to have lost his or her residence in any precinct or election district in this State by reason of his or her absence on business of the United States, or of this State.” 10 ILCS 5/3-2(a)

The court accepts that Rahm serving as Chief of Staff to the President of the United States qualifies as “business of the United States”, but then argues that when they say “residence” they only mean in terms of whether one qualifies as a voter, and not in any other residency context.  The basis of this conclusion is that the code specifies an “elector” and not a candidate, and that the section of the law is specifically about voter qualifications.  They follow this up that being a qualified elector and being a resident are two separate requirements (which makes enough sense, as they are both stated) and that subsequently the residency requirements for a voter aren’t the same as the residency requirements for a candidate (which is dumb).

This strikes me as being a really dumb argument, as they are arguing that he simultaneously is and isn’t a resident of Chicago.

Now imagine the judge is a witness being questioned.  “Is Rahm and elector?” “Yes.” “Did Rahm only leave because of the business of the United States?” “Yes.” “And does the statute say no elector shall be deemed to have lost his residency because of the business of the United States?” “Yes.” “So do you deem he, an elector, lost his residency because he left due to the business of the United States?” “Yes.”

Moronic.

Update V: New twist – the ballots are being printed tonight…sans Rahm.  Obviously they can still be reprinted, but this is Chicago, they’ll only be reprinted if the powers that be decide they want them to be reprinted.  This is smelling more and more like some powerful insiders want to get Rahm over a barrel before they let him get elected (or they want Chico, who’s more than willing to be over a barrel).

Don’t forget, we elect our judges here…meaning they’re just as corruptable as any other politician.

Update VI: The dissent is a very good read.  Here’s a key part:

Because the candidate had established his Chicago residency, it is presumed to continue until the contrary is shown, and the burden of proof is on the person who claims that there has been a change. Hatcher v. Anders, 117 Ill. App. 3d 236, 239 (1983). In the foundational case Kreitz v. Behrensmeyer, 125 Ill. 141 (1888), the supreme court stated:

“We have frequently held that when a party leaves his residence, or acquires a new one, it is the intention with which he does so that is to control. Hence the shortest absence, if, at the time, intended as a permanent abandonment, is sufficient, although the party may soon afterwards change his intention; while, on the other hand, an absence for months or even years, if all the while intended as a mere temporary absence for some temporary purpose, to be followed by a resumption of the former residence, will not be an abandonment.” Kreitz, 125 Ill. at 195.

The majority does not acknowledge Kreitz even though it has been the leading case defining “residence” since its issuance 122 years ago. To the extent the majority addresses the long-held principle that a party’s intention when he leaves or acquires his residence largely controls the determination of whether he has abandoned the residence, the majority distorts this principle (see discussion of Smith below). Then, the majority simply reads the principle out of its analysis, choosing instead to adopt a completely new standard.

Update VII: CapFax is reporting that Rahm’s attorneys have filed an emergency motion with the Illinois Supreme Court.  It’s available here.

My operating theory here is that this is just a question of whether Ed Burke thinks Chico’s a safe pick in a runoff against Braun.  I think it’s safe to say, due to the timing, that this ruling is Burke’s doing.  Remember, judges are elected in Illinois.  That doesn’t necessarily mean they’re corrupt, just like no other politicians in Chicago/Illinois are necessarily corrupt.  He’d obviously approve someone who’d jump at the opportunity to be his puppet (Chico) but he definitely prefers someone he can work with over the shitshow Braun would put on.

Written by updowndownup

January 24, 2011 at 6:21 pm