Mayor Richard Daley the Younger of Chicago has decided to retire after his current term, clearing the way for Rahm Emanuel, the current White House Chief of Staff, who is known to be desirous of returning to Illinois and being Mayor himself.
Richard Daley has been Mayor of Chicago since 1989 and like his father before him, Mayor Richard Daley the Elder, was known as a classic Chicago machine politician, with all that implies. Michelle Malkin caustically suggested that Richard Daley the Younger leaves behind a “bankrupt government coffers, crime-infested public housing, and one of the “most stressed cities” in the nation.”
Daley’s father was also a controversial Mayor, though with a reputation of being a more effective one. Richard Daley the Elder was most famous (or infamous depending on one’s point of view) for using the Chicago Police to savagely put down anti war protests during the 1968 Democratic Convention. The resulting scandal gave the elder Daley and Chicago a black eye.
If, as expected, Rahm Emanuel steps down as White House Chief of Staff just before the inevitable post midterm election shakeup compels him to leave anyway, two things will be certain. First, Chicago will get another machine style politician, albeit one who, incredible as it may sound, will be more ruthless than either of the Daleys father and son. Second, the Obama White House post 2010 election will look very different from the one that existed before.
Allahpundit at Hot Air is reporting speculation about who might replace Emanuel as White House Chief of Staff. Valerie Jarrett, currently a senior Obama advisor, seems to be on top of the short list. This will also touch off even speculation about who will leave in the wake of the predicted November bloodbath and who will be brought in to pick up the pieces.
That last speculation, about the post election White House shakeup, is another distraction the Obama administration doesn’t need at the moment. It will be terrible for moral in the West Wing and will give the impression (as if there wasn’t enough of one already) of a White House under siege.
The new White House staff, whomever winds up running it, will be one that is geared for battle against the Republican Congress to come. That also means that members of the White House staff, including its chief of staff, will practically be living on Capitol Hill, going from one hearing to the next trying to explain themselves before hostile committees of Republican Congressmen and Senators who are loaded for bear. One wonders if adding a term in the West Wing to one’s resume will be worth it.
Sources: Chicago machine politician quits, paving way for Chicago machine politician, Allahpundit, Hot Air, September 7th, 2010
Chicago Mayor Richard Daley hangs up his crooked hat, Michelle Malkin, Michelle Makin.Com, September 7th, 2010