Susan's Views                                 
International writer Susan Trevelyan-Syke on politics, media and economics.
                                                                                       



Susan Trevelyan-Syke
                           Chicago
                               
                 
Hello President Emanuel

The first congratulatory call came to Rahm Emanuel from the President of the United States of America.

The Illinois Supreme Court decided in a 7-0 decision on January 28 that Rahm Emanuel was a resident of Chicago and that he could run for Mayor of Chicago.

Five members of the Court (three Republicans and two Democrats) decided that Emanuel, who did not meet the one-year residency requirement of the municipal code to run for the office, had the 'intent' to remain a resident even though he declared himself a resident and paid residency taxes to Washington, D.C., during his role as Chief of Staff to President Obama.

Five Justices upheld the intemperate comments of the dissenting Appellate Court judge and condemned the two judges who ruled against Emanuel.

Two Democrat Justices voted with the majority, but wrote an 'Opinion' noting the inflamatory nature of the five's decision, their attack on the two Appellate Court judges, that they had not clearly defined 'domicile' and 'residence' by sorting through the contradictory laws once and for all and noted the conseqences of the decision as written:

1.  The issue of 'domicile' and 'residency' is not settled and the 1871 law remains confusing.

2.  Historically, the Court had many chances to do just that and has failed again - leaving ambiguity for the future.

3.  The consequences of the Court's decision in the Emanuel case has established the legal basis for for any and all City employees to live outside Chicago.  (Currently, Chicago law requires any City employee to live in Chicago and pay taxes in Chicago.) 

4.  The future financial impact on the City, with the loss of many taxpayers and their revenue, is incalculable. 

In short, the Court's failure to write a well-reasoned landmark decision has created long-term problems for the City.

None of the consequences seem to matter to the fawning Chicago media that got what it lobbied for. 

It no longer has any interest in attacking the Courts or judges as corrupt and is exultant that public sympathy for Emanuel has increased due to his judicial ordeal.

The President's advisor, David Axelrod, finished his White House job today and is rushing to Chicago to work for Emanuel's election.

The media and President's men are having a triumphant love fest with the man they already fondly call Mr Mayor (Emanuel).

Within a day, Chicago's political atmosphere changed.  The candidate debates and election are treated as mere formalities.

In fact, according to the media, there is almost no reason to bother with the election or any runoff.

Emanuel is the 'slamdunk' Mayor.

What's at stake for the President?  He expects Emanuel to bully the Illinois Democrats and other Illinoisans, who have problems with the Administration, into a united front to work for his re-election in 2012 and deliver the State for him.

The President lost Illinois House seats and his Senate seat to the Republicans in the 2010 midterm elections.  The only major Democrat to survive was Governor Patrick Quinn and he is an Independent.

In April, the U.S. State's Attorney will refile charges against Emanuel's friend, former Governor Rod Blogojevich, and Emanuel will be embroiled in the influence-peddling trial over President Obama's former Senate seat.

If Emanuel does not win a 50% majority vote on February 22, he may face a runoff with the runner up timed at the beginning of the Blago re-trial in April.

It is imperative for him to win February 22 without a runoff.

If President Obama is in jeopardy in 2012, Emanuel would consider a challenge to Senator Richard Durbin for his Senate seat as a stepping stone to the Presidency in 2016.

The Presidency is Emanuel's ultimate goal and President Obama has agreed to support Emanuel in 2016 if Emanuel makes every effort to deliver Illinois for the President in 2012.

Insiders joke that Emanuel and Obama will swap jobs in 2016 to retain Chicago and Illinois for Emanuel and the Democratic camp.

Questions of Emanuel's qualifications to be Mayor of a major city are not being asked.  No one but his competitors are looking at his record, qualifications and motives.  And who is listening to them?

Emanuel is untouchable.

Hello Mr Mayor.  Hello Mr President.

It is shock and more than ironic to see a city like Chicago, with so many intelligent citizens, tamely capitulating to this undemocratic set up when noble and brave Tunisians, Eqyptians, Yemenis and Jordanians are revolting on their streets and being shot down with American bullets in a fight to the death for their rights and that their countries might become democracies.  

Easy come, easy go, America.

Posted January 29, 2011



Desperados

Chicago awaits results of the Illinois Supreme Court review of the Appellate Court decision which removed Rahm Emanuel from the ballot as a candidate for Mayor of Chicago, because he failed to meet the basic requirement in the municipal code requiring a one-year residency in the City before the election. 

Both major Chicago newspapers, the Chicago Sun-Times and the Chicago Tribune, have endorsed Emanuel's right to be on the ballot despite the law excluding him. 

They echo the popular Emanuel memes of 'let the voters decide' or 'dirty politics is denying voters their voting choice'.

The Chicago Tribune's John Kass in a WGN Radio interview said that he would like to see Emanuel run, but everyone seems to be forgetting the law and feels it is a shame that the Burkes and the Courts are being 'demonized'.

Emanuel makes regular announcements that he is calmly confident that he will prevail against the Appellate Court decision.  He will participate in the Chicago Tribune Editorial panel discussion today with other candidates.

Many respected Chicago, Illinois and national media members claim that Emanuel's team is 'working the media' 
around the clock leaking 'exclusives' attacking the Burkes and the Courts whom they blame for Emanuel's plight.

Alderman Edward Burke of the 14th Ward is alleged to be the real 'boss' of Chicago and Emanuel's sponsor, Mayor Richard J Daley, is considered to be a secondary front.  Burke's wife, Anne, is an elected member of the Illinois Supreme Court - the same Court that will decide Emanuel's fate. 

Burke has endorsed Gery Chico who may be the best-qualified candidate. 
 
Many members of the media have also received personal calls from David Axelrod from the White House.  Axelrod, as principal strategist for President Barack Obama, claims that the President wants Emanuel to be Mayor of Chicago and some Chicago Democrats are playing 'dirty politics' in an attempt to keep Emanuel off the ballot.

Why is the White House so desperate to have Rahm Emanuel installed as Mayor of Chicago? 

Why is the White House putting pressure on Chicago and Illinois politicians to elect Emanuel despite the law and the current Court review? 

Obama taught Constitutional law and cannot claim that he does not understand he is violating ethics by attempting to interfer with due process of law and compromising the White House as well.

The reality is that there is a growing schism between Chicagoan Obama and many top Democrats in the State. 

Even Illinois voters gave the President a pasting in the midterm elections with many of his close friends going down in defeat.  

Daley could be counted on for unconditional support especially now that his brother William is Emanuel's successor as Obama's Chief of Staff.   

Now that Daley is retiring, President Obama needs someone to 'herd the Illinois cats' back under his control.  Emanuel is known as an exceptional bruiser and the White House thinks he can deliver Chicago.

One unanswered question for Chicagoans is why Emanuel and only Emanuel is their choice for Mayor (according to polls) when other candidates are far more qualified to manage a large city like Chicago?

Is the media and are the voters so dazzled by the White House connections that they will allow the President to impose a Mayor on them to help him be re-elected in 2012? 

The legal media covers Emanuel as if he is a media star a la Sarah Palin.

Will the review delay give the media and voters enough time to start asking the right questions about who is the best choice to lead Chicago? 

Posted January 27, 2011



Bon Voyage

A gracious solution to a tricky problem:  the Baltimore Sun announced that, if Rahm Emanuel is not successful in staying on the Chicago Mayoral ballot, he would be welcomed "with open arms" to become their Mayor.

Posted January 27, 2011


Rahmbo the Victim

Just when we thought we had only one victim in today's national politics - the venerable Sarah 'Joan of Arc' Palin, another of this country's most ruthless politicians, Rahm Emanuel, is alleging a cunning 'conspiracy' to keep him from becoming Mayor of Chicago.

How can this be?  Emanuel ditched his role as Chief of Staff to the President of the United States just before the disastrous (for Democrats) midterm elections after he learned that Richard J Daley, Mayor of Chicago for 21 years, would not run for another term.

Emanuel lived in Chicago and was elected as a Representative to the House of Representatives from Alderman Richard Mell's* district until he took the White House job.  He rented his Chicago house out to tenants on a long lease and continued to pay taxes on it out of the revenue. 

He was a resident of D.C. until October 2010 when he flew to Chicago in October with over $10 million in corporate, foreign, Wall Street and Hollywood money to stake his claim to the Mayor's office.

From the moment he arrived, Emanuel zealously worked the 50-Ward Chicago constituencies one-by-one despite his repeated condemnation and interference in Howard Dean's successful 50-State campaigns in 2006 and 2008 when Dean was Chair of the Democratic National Committee.

Since Dean's grassroots-way worked, Emanuel quickly led the polls of a large divided field of candidates and was widely touted as a shoo-in to represent a City whose population is about 40% White, 40% Black, 17% Hispanic and 3% Asian. 

Interestingly the rich banker brother of the current Mayor, William Daley, was appointed by the President to succeed Emanuel as his Chief of Staff providing a nice quid quo pro.

Everything looked like a done deal with the 'Pretender' Emanuel showing his usual contempt for his fellow candidates by skipping debate meetings with the narrowed field of serious contenders Carol Mosley Braun, Gery Chico and Miguel Del Vallee.
 
Emanuel is on the ballot for now, but was knocked off and then temporarily reinstated.

The City has been ordered to stop printing ballots for the February 27 election and early voting which starts January 31.

So what went wrong?

Lawyers challenged Emanuel's right to run for Mayor based on the municipal code which requires candidates to "reside in" the City for a year before running for office.

Emanuel resided in Washington, D.C., for 18 months until October 2010 and paid residency taxes in D.C. until he decided to run for Mayor of Chicago.
 
He clearly does not meet the municipal statute requirement.

Politics being what they are in Chicago, the Board of Election Commissioners gave Emanuel a green light to run.  The decision was appealed to the Circuit Court which let the BEC decision stand.

Then the plaintiffs appealed to the Appellate Court and Emanuel was pollaxed by its decision. 

Two of the three judges issued a majority opinion that "resided in" actually means "live in" the City and that Emanuel met no 'exceptional' criteria to be granted a waiver of that requirement. 

The Court also ordered his name be struck from the ballots.

The one dissenting judge issued a shokingly intemperate attack on her fellow judges in a minority opinion backing Emanuel's position that he always intended to return to Chicago and he voted from Chicago; therefore, he is a resident.

Emanuel immediately appealed to the Illinois Supreme Court for a 'stay' on removing his name from the ballots and for a review of the Appellate Court judgment - on an 'expedited' basis.

The 'stay' has been granted and the Court will review materials submitted to and from the Appellate Court allowing no further pleading.

No one knows how the seven members of the Court will vote.  About 75% of those polled think Emanuel will win.

Of course, many of that 75% voted with bitterness believing that Chicago and Illinois are corrupt and laws don't apply to the likes of the well-connected Emanuel.

The President put serious pressure on the Illinois Supreme Court when he sent his most trusted adviser, Valerie Jarrett, on national television to emphasize that the President wanted Emanuel as Mayor and that he expects the Supreme Court to decide in favor of Emanual.

It all does look like a conspiracy, but is it the 'conspiracy' that Emanuel claims or is it the more obvious Obama/Daley/Emanuel fix?

Emanuel insists that he will go to the United States Supreme Court claiming a 'conspiracy' and interference with his First Amendment rights if the Illinois Supreme Court does not rule in his favor.

Emanuel should have a lot of luck there with five Conservative justices.

He and his team have singled out Illinois Supreme Court Justice Anne Burke for endless media attacks demanding she recuse herself from the review.

He is also waging a relentless attack on her husband, Alderman Edward Burke of the 14th Ward and Chairman of the Cook County Democratic Party, claiming Burke is supporting Gery Chico for Mayor and not Emanuel.

Wild smears from Emanuel staff include claims that Burke paid the Republican lawyer, who filed that residency challenges, to destroy Emanuel's chances and that the judges who ruled against him were recommended to the Court by Burke (actually all three judges were recommended given his role as head of the CC Democratic Party Chairman) and that they were carrying out Burke's orders in the negative judgment. 

The law and the legislature's intent when the law was written, not what it might have intended over 100 years later, is what matters. 

The law decides if Emanuel meets the residency requirements to run for Mayor or not.  The law as written will have to be twisted to accommodate him as the Appellate Judge Hoffman wrote a clear and brilliantly-reasoned opinion based on the law and precedent.

Pressure from the President and various politicos, blackmail, vicious smears of judges and anyone who opposes Emanuel, threats from the media threats of other types of reprisals have NO PLACE in this election.

Emanuel's team have made it clear that the Burkes 'ain't seen nothin yet'.

Let me own up.  I am a fourth-or-fifth generation Chicagoan and I love the City.  It is NOT corrupt.  The people are NOT corrupt.  Some individuals are corrupt and every city has corrupt people.

I fought through the Harold Washington campaign and it was rough, but nothing has ever been as ugly as this in my lifetime. 

It feels like Al Capone is back.

This campaign is a disgrace to a great city and people.

This man cannot lead Chicago as Mayor.  He has brought it into worldwide disgrace before he is elected.
 
Just wait for the Blago hearings in April when he, Valerie Jarrett and the President are part of the influence-peddling 'conspiracy' to fill Obama's vacated Senate seat.

Does Chicago need this?

Meanwhile, Emanuel demonizes the Burkes - the couple who love Chicago and would never do anything to hurt the city they have lived in for their whole lives.

Let's not forget it is Rahmbo who is the victim.  He might not get what he wants which is Chicago.

If the Burkes are Chicago's salvation, may they prevail.  They are not alone in wanting to protect Chicago. 


*
Emanuel's sponsor/mentor Mell is notoriously connected to the mob and Mossad.


Posted January 26, 2011
 

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