AFT President Randi Weingarten said she'd give $1 million to Chicago teachers union chief Karen Lewis if she ran against Mayor Rahm Emanuel....Chicago Sun-TimesThe cynic in me says, what better way to get rid of a potential rival? A million bucks will be a drop in the bucket against Rahm but Randi is a genius. A win-win for her no matter what the outcome.
The intriguing Chicago mayoral race can be unique. Instead of the union relying on the usual Democratic slugs, they decide to run their own candidates. The union has 5 people running for Alderman.
George Schmidt, as usual, has great foresight and raises issues like "What if we win?" When we were in LA he talked about how if Karen won she would have to negotiate a new contract with her successor, most likely Jesse Sharkey.
When the national social justice caucuses met in Chicago a few weeks ago, George asked them to talk about how a union caucus wins power and how do they keep it. They were interested in more general stuff, not the nuts and bolts, it seems.
Here George raises the idea that 'WINNING' WILL JUST BE THE BEGINNING.
I was skeptical when Karen first began letting us know that she was seriously considering running for mayor. I'm not now. It's a continuation of what we've been doing in a new political era. But just as "winning" the 2010 (and 2013) CTU elections were only a beginning, so too will that be. Rahm will spend millions of dollars to re-elect himself in February 2015 and lose because his reality has failed and his frauds have been exposed in a democracy. His billionaire supporters will spend tens of millions of dollars attacking Karen (especially) and the rest of us (indirectly and in some cases directly). And yet, as Karen noted Tuesday, when people in Chicago are voting, they vote by community, precinct and ward -- not on the basis of some silly Hollywood scripting like "Chicagoland" on CNN.
And then the challenges will get even more great.
Thanks for helping me remain a part of this more than 50 years after the first time I was arrested for "social justice" work...
RAHM'S WEAKNESSES. As usual, The "Mayor's Press Office" is wasting taxpayer money promoting Rahm. This morning's media event ("no media availability") takes place at the West Ridge Nature Preserve, 5601 N. Western, at 11:30. Rahm's press announcement says that he will be announcing a "major nature investment." Even "nature" bows to Rahm's versions of reality. Did you notice how everything he does is an 'investment'? The man's mind is trapped in that narrowest of boxes, Wall Street, and he really is a mental cripple because of it. I'm going to try to let you know, every day, where Rahm's people say he will be. He has always stalled until the last minutes these announcements.