Friday, December 15, 2017

Do Chicagoans want former cop as mayor? Could he learn from namesake?

It’s not surprising that former Chicago Police Superintendent Garry McCarthy is peeved enough with Mayor Rahm Emanuel that he’d contemplate running against him come the 2019 municipal election cycle.

McCARTHY, G.: The future mayor?
As the Chicago Sun-Times has reported, McCarthy has gone so far as to hire a political strategist who theoretically would run his campaign – should he decide to seek the mayor’s office.

QUITE AMBITIOUS FOR a native New Yorker who came up through the NYPD ranks and eventually became the top cop in Newark, N.J., before his Chicago police stint from 2011-15.

Is Chicago anxious to give control of city government to a Noo Yawker? Are we ready to put someone originally from the Bronx (rather than the Sout’ Side) in the mayor’s Fifth floor suite of offices at City Hall?

It would seem that McCarthy thinks he can be the candidate of choice for all the people who are determined to “Dump Rahm” following two terms in office.

With the major offense being that it was under his watch the Chicago police became embroiled in the ongoing criminal proceedings against a police officer who allegedly fired 16 shots into a 17-year-old boy – ultimately killing him.

ACTUALLY, IT’S NOT really alleged that the officer now facing murder charges fired the shots. There’s police video (lacking accompanying audio) that clearly shows him firing the shots.

McCARTHY, T.: The failed politico
What’s questionable is the motivation for using force in subduing the 17-year-old. Defense attorneys for the officer have said they’re going to claim the lack of audio means the video has no context – and that the images by themselves are meaningless.

Not that any of this meant anything. When it became apparent nearly three years ago that this 2014 shooting wasn’t going to go away, Emanuel took the action of firing the police superintendent.

Meaning McCarthy had to go. He had to take the blame so as to save the mayor’s keister. Now McCarthy wants to return the favor by helping to deliver a blow to the mayor’s future political viability.

I QUESTION WHY anybody who wants to see Rahm Emanuel voted out of office because of this incident would want to have McCarthy as his replacement. I think Garry is the last person they’d consider voting for – and might well be enough to make them hold their noses pinched shut while casting a vote for Rahm’s re-election.
Can same political operatives drive Rahm Emanuel's rep ...

But McCarthy is likely to fight all-out. I find his choice of a political strategist interesting. It’s Joe Trippi, who most recently was working for the U.S. Senate campaign of Doug Jones of Alabama. Meaning he’s able to take credit for the campaign that caused the political downfall of Republican Roy Moore.

Does McCarthy think he can turn Rahm into as hated a politico as Moore – the former judge who liked to tout the 10 Commandments and other religious dogma, but now faces allegations of how he used to be attracted to teenage girls even though he was well into his 30s.

If that’s the case, the Chicago municipal elections that will come on the verge of the ugly brawl we’re going to face in 2018 for Illinois governor may become so vicious that the potential Rauner/Pritzker battle may come off as a few “love taps” by comparison. Because we all know if challenged, Rahm will fight back equally hard.

I HAVE TO admit that as I watch McCarthy’s preparatory actions, I’m reminded of the 1998 election cycle when Orland Park Police Chief Tim McCarthy (no relation) tried running for statewide office – specifically Illinois secretary of state.
... as low as that of Roy Moore in Ala.?

Tim McCarthy is the one-time Secret Service agent who actually wound up getting shot during a 1981 assassination attempt on then-President Ronald Reagan. He had hopes that memories of that moment could build up enough good will toward him that he could win office despite never having held a political post.

But Tim McCarthy became pushy and his backers wound up leading an effort against would-be opponent Penny Severns to get her kicked off the ballot – thinking he could clear the path for his own election. Even the Democratic operatives who liked the idea of feeding off a bit of Reagan love for their own benefit quickly turned on him – and we wound up getting Jesse White in the post. One he continues to hold to this day.

Is Garry McCarthy going to make the same mistake of getting too pushy? Perhaps he ought to learn from the actions of Tim McCarthy, who has never run for office since his ’98 bid and remains a beloved police chief in his Chicago suburb.


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