Hump Day Political News Roundup
By Kevin Robinson in News on Dec 20, 2006 5:30PM
While we were busy obsessing over Ward politics and aldermanic races, all kinds of newsworthy events happened in the spectator sport of local Chicago politics. Lets take a look back at the week so far:
- Todd Stroger is asking Cook County's elected officials for budget cuts, in an attempt to trim the deficit. Facing a nearly $500 million shortfall, Stroger is asking Sheriff Tom Dart, State's Attorney Dick Devine, and Clerk of the Court Dorothy Brown, among others, to cut their budgets by 17% instead of the 10% they were originally facing. All those patronage workers that thought they were protecting their jobs can't be happy.
- While we're at it, Stroger has shuffled the deck at the county, including bringing in Mike Quigley's former Chief of Staff as his new chief of policy and special projects.
- Dorothy Brown, the newly minted challenger to Da Mare, has accused Daley of trying to make Chicago into an "elitist city," invoking Katrina-ravaged New Orleans for visual imagery. Citing development that has largely been absent from the South and West sides, she says she wants to focus more on neighborhoods and affordable housing.
- Even when you lose an election in politics, you never really go away. If you are big enough. And Big Red is big enough to stick around for a while longer. Judy Baar Topinka was named as a suburban representitive to the Regional Transportation Authority Board yesterday. Said our man, Tony Peraica, "I wanted someone who would be more actively engaged. I think Judy will be.”
- Newt Gingrich digs Barack Obama.
- Daley had a field day ridiculing aldermen for banning foie gras and suggesting Chicago restaurants sharply restrict artery-clogging trans fats. There goes a big piece of Joe Moore's platform....
- Buying lottery tickets and driving out to Gary or Joliet not enough to scratch your itch? Now you can gamble on the Aldermanic races in Chicago.
- Blagojevich raised the minimum wage by a whole $1. It will increase each year thereafter by 25 cents, topping out in 2010 at $8.25.