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Thursday, January 18, 2007

Aldermanic Elections: Coming In To Focus

Richard Carnahan looks at the aldermanic elections around the city over at Gaper's Block. He already sectioned off races as either tier-one or tier-two. Well I want to look at some of the black wards that have made it into the column.

In this column it starts with the Chicago Federation of Labor failing to endorse anyone as mayor and and they are attempting to mettle in the election of alderman. They figure in a lot of the races around the city where they are endorsing candidates. With their help many could pull off upsets. Still...

If the CFL had had a viable alternative to Daley, they could have crafted at ticket that would likely have driven more voters — their voters — to the polls and thereby built a more effective city-wide GOTV operation. Jesse Jackson Jr.'s decision not to head up such a ticket will have serious implications for many of labor's candidates and will give a very false impression of weakness if they are unable to win the seats they've targeted.
Anyway here are Carnahan's looks at the black wards. Mind you he doesn't just do black wards, but he does wards around the city. I'll leave it up to you to look at the others. And if I mention them it's only because they are hot races...

2nd Ward (South Loop, North Bronzeville): Jesse Jackson Jr. has endorsed a former aid of his, Kenny Johnson, but Alderman Haithcock's biggest change will probably come from the well-financed Bob Fioretti. The CFL did not endorse anybody in this race, which leaves it even more wide open. This will go to a run-off.

3rd Ward (Bronzeville, South Side): Dorothy Tillman, what to say about you? I'll leave the tired jokes about your hats for the hacks, and just bring up the fact that you spent 20 percent of your ward's infrastructure funds on statues. CFL has endorsed Pat Dowell, who will force a run-off and win.

7th Ward (Chatham): Mmmm, Jackson family (Sandi Jackson) v. Beavers and friends (Darcel Beavers). The CFL has tapped Sandi Jackson, who is the Congressman's wife, but the Beavers family has an ace in the hole — well, not an "ace in the hole" so much as two entire suits up their sleeves, the Diamonds and Hearts of Chicago politics, the Strogers and Daleys. Anybody who gives you a hard-and-fast prediction of what's going to happen here is crazy. Just pop some popcorn, get off the Dan Ryan at 87th where the casino shuttles pick up, head east and enjoy the show.
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15th Ward (Englewood): The CFL has endorsed Toni Foulkes, who is a member of the United Food and Commercial Workers and was among the leadership of the Big Box Living Wage Ordinance fight. Her highest-profile competitor and the leader of the pack is Denise Dixon, a former field director for Rainbow-PUSH and president of the local ACORN chapter. Foulkes' endorsement by the CFL will provide the cover for several very large labor locals — including SEIU Locals 1 and 880 — to support Foulkes over the Rainbow-PUSH candidate if they choose to do so (SEIU has not made official endorsements yet).

18th Ward (Auburn-Gresham, Scottsdale): If Bob Fioretti can overtake Madeline Haithcock in the 2nd Ward, this race will lose some significance as the racial balance of the Council will likely stay the same. White Alderman Tom Murphy moved on to a judgeship, and the CFL has endorsed Paul Stewart, who is African-American. Stewart is also probably the most well-qualified, and if the CFL comes through with money and some troops, that just might be the edge Stewart needs in a wide-open race. The appointed incumbent, Lola Lane, still has to be considered something of a favorite.
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20th Ward (Washington Park, Grand Crossing): Chicago's name will be Mudd when indicted Alderman Arenda Troutman is re-elected. Even if she's later found guilty of no wrongdoing. By the way, Alderman Troutman, your lawyer rules.

21st Ward (Brainerd, Roseland): Ald. Howard Brookins, Jr. learned a valuable lesson in Council politics when a deal was brokered to sink his Wal-Mart project and keep Ald. Emma Mitts' afloat. The lesson: Come to us with your head bowed, not your hand out. He will hold on to this seat against a bevy of candidates, and has received Congressman Jackson's endorsement although the CFL has obviously chosen to endorse former Rainbow-PUSH activist Leroy Jones, Jr.
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37th Ward (Austin, Humboldt): The CFL has endorsed nobody in the 37th Ward, the center of the Wal-Mart fight, and an economically depressed area with a high density of low-wage union workers. Ouch.
Oh yeah let me take that back, there are interesting races to be waged in the 49th ward (that's Ald. Joe Moore's ward and man does he get busted upon by The Broken Heart), 50th Ward (Bernard Stone who is facing three challengers), the 43rd (I blogged about one of the challengers Peter Zelchenko), and the 42nd ward (with Nataurus facing two opponents and who knows he might lose this one, but we'll have to see).

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Thanks for watching us in the 49th!

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