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Mayoral Smackdown: The Pre-game Show

By Scott Smith in News on Sep 18, 2006 11:31PM

Two men that are running for mayor but refuse to declare it are taking swipes at each other in the local papers. Neither one will definitively say it, but it sure looks to Chicagoist like the competition is on.

Yesterday, Jesse Jackson Jr. 2006_09_jacksonjr.jpgadmonished Richard Daley to "leave race out of it". Apparently claiming that the unions turned a blind eye when big-box retailers opened shop outside of black neighborhoods, Da Mare accused living-wage supporters of chasing business out of the city. Not to be outdone, Jr. accused Richard M. of being in bed with George Bush, and compared the veto of the ordinance to the Pullman workers' struggle to organize a union of their own in the 19th Century.

We here at Chicagoist love a good tussle any day, but we find the claims of both non-candidates a bit inflated. It seems that those that contend Wal-Mart and their ilk are exploiting their employees saw their opportunity to force the issue here in town and took it. And we are skeptical of claims that passing a living-wage ordinance, although socio-economically significant, are akin to an entire generation’s struggle to escape the lack of social mobility wrought by the new industrialism.

Not wanting to miss out on a chance for publicity, one of the actually declared candidates for mayor, Dorothy Brown, pointed out that both Jackson and Daley were making a racial issue where there isn’t one. Advocating a Third Way, Brown has vowed to serve as a mediator between retailers and aldermen.

All of this seems like just a lot of huffing and puffing on everyone’s part. At least the days of voting for someone "before it’s too late" and "wet" mayors are behind us.

Thanks, Kevin!