Carol Felsenthal
On Politics

4 years
ago

 

Controversial Pastor and Chico Supporter Herbert Martin—plus Memories of Steve Cokely

At the ABC7 debate Thursday, the candidates for mayor were asked whom they would name to their “kitchen” cabinets—their unofficial group of advisers. Not surprisingly, Gery Chico named two men whose endorsements are crucial: Congressman Luis Gutierrez and the Reverend B. Herbert Martin, Sr., longtime pastor of the Progressive Community Church in Bronzeville. Martin, 68, is best known for being Harold Washington’s close friend and pastor—and for standing with Steve Cokely in 1988 after Cokely, then 37, made inflammatory recorded lectures at Louis Farrakhan’s Nation of Islam headquarters.

Carol Felsenthal

4 years
ago

 

Tea Party for Chico, Donald Trump for Emanuel—What’s the Difference?

Rahm Emanuel and his surrogates have been pounding relentlessly on Gery Chico for accepting—sort of—the endorsement last month of the Chicago Tea Patriots, an offshoot of the main Chicago Tea Party group. But late last year, before a new campaign finance reform law kicked in, Donald Trump contributed $50,000 to Rahm’s campaign for mayor. This is the same Donald Trump who appeared in Washington earlier this month before the uber-right group…

Carol Felsenthal

4 years
ago

 

At Economic Club Dinner, a Mayor Daley Lovefest

On Tuesday night, Rich Daley delivered a 30-minute self-congratulatory and, at times, inspiring speech. It was also relentlessly upbeat, even sunny—“the future [of Chicago] is brighter every day,” he said. But the most intriguing aspect of the evening, for me, was what wasn’t said…

Carol Felsenthal

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4 years
ago

 

Which Chicago Mayoral Candidate Will Get the Youth Vote?

For young voters, the February 22nd mayoral primary will be the first time they’ll encounter a ballot without the name Richard M. Daley on it. One of the liveliest efforts to push this group to the polls was started last September by a 25-year-old on the day that Daley announced he wasn’t running for another term…

Carol Felsenthal

4 years
ago

 

David Brooks Sends Rahm Emanuel an Early Valentine—Again

Days after Rahm Emanuel left his job as chief of staff on October 1st to return here to run for mayor, New York Times columnist David Brooks wrote the “The Soft Side.” The column was weirdly worded—“Flawed like all of us, [Rahm] is a full human being, rich and fertile from the inside out”—and provided plenty of easy laughs for Brooks/Rahm detractors. Today, Brooks did it again…

Carol Felsenthal

4 years
ago

A Look at Miguel del Valle, a Regular Chicago Guy Who Wants to Be Mayor

Miguel del Valle doesn’t have much money—peanuts compared to Rahm Emanuel and Gery Chico, and way less even than Patricia Watkins and Carol Moseley Braun. When I asked him yesterday afternoon if there would be runoff on February 22nd, he answered, “My guess is Rahm is going to buy one of the spots; as for the second, I hope I’m that person…

Carol Felsenthal

4 years
ago

What the Sun-Times’ Rahm Endorsement Doesn’t Say

It was no surprise to me that the Sun-Times endorsed Rahm Emanuel today, the first day of early voting. The paper was a strong supporter of Rahm’s right to stay on the ballot, and the editorial board seemed to be strongly in his corner. There’s a line in the endorsement that caught my eye…

Carol Felsenthal

4 years
ago

Some Unanswered Questions in the Mayoral Debate

The City Club/Chicago Tribune-sponsored mayoral debate at the WGN studios Thursday was lively enough, but some of the more interesting exchanges happened afterwards, off camera, when each of the four participants took five minutes of questions from the press. I asked the first candidate up, Miguel del Valle, why he hadn’t…

Carol Felsenthal

4 years
ago

Patricia Van Pelt Watkins’ Gritty and Inspiring Life Story

Mayoral candidate Patricia Watkins has seen her share of tough times—she spent her formative years at Cabrini-Green, she was addicted to drugs at one point, and her daughter died in a plane crash at 17. The 53-year-old community organizer who founded Target Area Development Corp., a “grassroots social justice organization,” has been in the mayor’s race from the start. But the first-time candidate has polled as low as…

Carol Felsenthal

4 years
ago

 

Northwestern Law Prof on Rahm’s Prospects Now

Weeks ago, when most people thought that the challenge to Rahm Emanuel’s residency status was a lost cause, Northwestern Law Professor Sam Tenenbaum dissented. He reminded me of that today when I called him for his reaction to the Illinois Appeals Court ruling that Rahm is ineligible to run for mayor because he does not meet the residency requirement of having lived in Chicago for a year prior to…

Carol Felsenthal

4 years
ago

 

Rich and Rahm as Family Men—Some Striking Similarities

Not to take the comparison between Rich Daley and Rahm Emanuel too far—Daley in ballet tights?—but as family men the mayor and his would-be successor share a couple of key traits. When Bill Clinton came to town on Tuesday to tout the talents of his buddy Rahm, and Rahm responded by toasting his former boss, “I could not ask for a better role model than you,” I wondered what Rahm’s wife Amy Rule thought…

Carol Felsenthal

4 years
ago

Luis Gutierrez on Why Rahm Emanuel Should Not Be Mayor

As Bill Clinton hits Chicago today to campaign for Rahm Emanuel, Luis Gutierrez, since 1993 the Congressman from the 4th District, is recording a robo call urging Chicagoans to vote for Gery Chico for mayor—and not to vote for Rahm Emanuel. Gutierrez, the loudest voice in the U.S congress for easing up on immigrants, and, for a time, a prospect to…

Carol Felsenthal

4 years
ago

Seeking an Explanation for Carol Moseley Braun’s Harvard Claim

When mayoral candidate Carol Moseley Braun—Kirk’s predecessor in the U.S. Senate—went on WGN radio early last Wednesday morning and claimed that she had “an advanced degree from Harvard” (she has degrees from the University of Illinois and the University of Chicago Law School), the only reporter I’ve found who picked up on the whopper…

Carol Felsenthal