CHICAGO, June 27, 2014 — Could the all-powerful Mayor Rahm Emanuel be unseated in the Democrat machine stronghold of Chicago? The same city ruled with an iron fist by the Mayor Richard J. Daley? The political birthplace of President Barack H. Obama?
The answer is yes and yes and yes.
Rahm’s national political ambitions notwithstanding – he has been mentioned as a vice presidential running mate for Hillary Clinton or a Clinton replacement if she is a no-go – the former White House Chief of Staff to President Obama still has to overcome the hurdle that is his 2015 mayoral re-election bid.
And so far the political numbers are not in his favor.
A recent poll shows that only 29 percent of those Chicagoans polled would vote for Emanuel if the election were today.
Sensing political blood in the Chicago water, conservative TV producer William J. Kelly tossed his hat into the mayoral ring this weekend. At an appearance with former White House advisor Dick Morris at Chicago’s Palomar Hotel, Kelly blasted Emanuel and his record. He also took some shots across the bow a former President Bill Clinton, who was in Chicago raising cash for Emanuel’s campaign.
“They call Rahm “Mayor 1%” because he cares more about his billionaire friends – many of whom don’t even live in Illinois. Rahm says that that’s not true, that he also has many close friends among the 2nd and 3rd percent,” Kelly said.
“Right now, as we speak, Rahm is directly across the street skirting campaign finance laws with none other than Bill Clinton. Who, of course, showed up the second he heard Rahm’s staff mention the word, ‘skirt.’ In fact, Bill Clinton is extra happy today – Rahm’s fundraiser is being held right next to Te Jay’s Adult Bookstore. Otherwise known as the Clinton Presidential Library in Chicago.”
Kelly also wasted no time attacking Rahm’s record.
“Rahm just raised taxes on 911 calls. I would say that is taking “never let a good crisis go to waste” a little too far. Rahm is always bragging all these surveillance cameras he put everywhere. They’ve captured hundreds of hours of very disturbing anti-social behavior and that’s just the footage of Rahm.”
If Rahm loses his mayoral re-election in Chicago in February, his political brand will be damaged and he will be seen as vulnerable. Beatable.
“It’s time for someone to say out loud what everyone already knows: Emperor Emanuel has no clothes. The myth of ‘Rahmsuperiority’ has been shattered,” Kelly added.
As the maxim goes, “What happens in Chicago, doesn’t stay in Chicago.”
In 2004, a little known state senator from Illinois named Barack Obama was elected to the U.S. Senate. Just two years later, he was elected President of the United States.
Mayor Emanuel’s trajectory appears to be heading in a different direction. Based on his Chicago approval rating, his political brand has been damaged already.