Friday, December 4, 2015

Who’s the new ‘b----’ of Chicago politics? Or do we despise Rahm more?

Cook County State’s Attorney Anita Alvarez likely remains the most unpopular woman of the Chicago political scene these days; what with all the people who want her to resign her post as punishment for not promptly seeking criminal charges against the police officer who shot Laquan McDonald to death.

ALVAREZ: Still most despised
After all, the city is facing embarrassment for the way that 2014 shooting incident occurred and people want somebody’s head on a pike. Although not anybody too important – a state’s attorney may be high enough on the political totem pole.

BUT FOR A time, it seemed that Alvarez was going to be displaced as the femme many people wanted to see suffer.

For Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan had the unmitigated gall (some would say) to suggest that the Justice Department come in and investigate the way the Chicago Police Department handles things.

I can already hear the spirit of Richard J. Daley rolling over in his grave, while her very own father, Illinois House Speaker Michael Madigan, was probably wondering where he went wrong in teaching her the ways of politics and government.

For the last thing our political people ever want is to invite the feds into the scene. Who knows what they might dig up? Or might decide is important and worthy of further attention and action.

AFTER ALL, THEY don’t even answer to “da mare.” They think the president of the United States is the big guy.

MADIGAN: Challenging the prosecutor?
So even though this would be a Justice Department headed by people with ties to our city’s very own Barack Obama, saying that the federal government is needed to tell Chicago how its police department ought to operate is perhaps the ultimate heresy.

You might as well suggest that some outside entity ought to tell Emanuel how to do his job!

Plus, I’m sure the type of people who think that too much is being made of this McDonald mess (how dare anyone challenge a police officer’s authority or judgment) resent the idea that Lisa Madigan would suggest the need for the United States government to intervene in any way.

THIS RESENTMENT, MUCH of which will come from the “right wing” of our political society, might have been enough to make Madigan the most unpopular woman of our local political scene.

CLINTON: Support for Lisa's stance
After all, the lead story of the Chicago Tribune on Thursday wasn’t Madigan’s request for federal intervention, but local hostility toward the idea. Mayor: No need for fed probe was the banner headline on Page One.

Yet there are those sources of support for such an idea, including Sen. Richard Durbin, D-Ill., and the presidential aspirations of Hillary R. Clinton – who said she also thinks a federal investigation of our police is a worthy idea.

And even Emanuel had to back off his opposition to the idea, what with Crain’s Chicago Business reporting in mid-day that Emanuel now ‘welcomes’ federal probe of Chicago police.

IT MAY JUST be that our mess of a law enforcement situation is going to have to result in some sort of outside intervention in order to save ourselves from eternal damnation!

EMANUEL: Must he go?
Which puts Anita Alvarez back in the position of the woman despised by Chicagoans for letting this situation spring up – particularly those who delivered 32,000 petition signatures Thursday of people demanding her resignation. Although messes within law enforcement are rarely one person’s fault – and there are those who are determined to believe that Rahm Emanuel himself MUST BE the one who suffers in the end.

As I previously have written, I think it shortsighted to demand one person’s resignation. I don’t think the departure of Garry McCarthy as police superintendent changes things, nor would that of Alvarez, even though state’s attorney candidate Donna More said in a statement, “the McDonald case is just another in a series of missteps by the chief prosecutor that bring into question her handling of politically-charged cases.”

Because I still wonder how ridiculous will we all look if, by chance, we do boot all these people from office – and in the end Jason Van Dyke (the cop in question) winds up being acquitted! That very real possibility could wind up provoking the riots we managed to avert during the past week.


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