The four-headed Chicago mayor: Can we vote for all of them?

February 15, 2011

While watching the mayoral debate last night, I finally realized who I am voting for. Yep, I'm voting for all four.

Chicago needs a strong leader for this unprecedented financial time. We need a leader who is going to be progressive with pension reform and policing. We need a leader with experience tackling tough civic problems, someone who is charismstic, someone who understands the city's history and diversity.  Here's my breakdown of what each candidate brings to the table and why they should join forces:

Rahm Emanuel - The clear favorite, what Rahm brings to the table is experience. He references auto industry bailouts, mortgage crisis clean-up and Tom DeLay. These are all stories that affect us as a country, and Emanuel was in the middle of these stories. While del Valle was fighting Phil Rock about sub-districts of the Cook County Judicial system, Emanuel was esentially running the White House. I'll take Rahm's experience, in a heartbeat.  But...

Gery Chico: I'm not sure I would have Rahm Emanuel as my COO. It seems like Emanuel would be better suited to be the creative go-to to handle such issues, and Gery Chico would be my boss. Here's the point that Chico is trying to drive home: He's been here before. He's been Chief of Staff in several Chicago departments and knows the ins and outs of working with city government. He isn't going to ruffle feathers and cause all out political war by announcing cutbacks. I like that in my boss. He understands where we've been and won't take us back there.

Miguel del Valle: What de Valle lacks in experience, he makes up for in spirit. He is the driving grassroots spirit of this campaign. He's protecting the people in neighborhoods and respecting the working class, talking about how to make our city neighborhoods better. Those issues can be glossed over when the business of big cities takes center stage.

Carol Moseley Braun: I love Carol's spunk. She is loose, casual and quite frankly, this campaign's rabble-rouser (apologies to Chico). And not only that, but she represents history. She is the only African-American female Senator in U.S. history. HISTORY! We need that kind of history, that kind of special person who embodies a moment in time. Having African-Americans like Moseley-Braun shows Chicago as a progressive city, bucking the trend of having old, white men at the helm. And Braun (whether you like it or not) does represent a portion of the black community in Chicago, which for so long hasn't had a strong voice representing it in City Hall. This would make Carol a tremendous asset for the city of Chicago and for a sitting mayor.

It makes sense, doesn't it?

I don't think their plans for the future of Chicago differ that much. They all want more police, they all want to save pensions. They all want to root out corruption and they all want a focus on schools. But their backgrounds and their styles alone aren't appealing. Put all four together? You've got my vote.

PHOTO: The photo above is from the earlier mayoral debate. Last night's photos from WTTW debate didn't include Carol Moseley Braun. AP cited that she didn't arrive until after the photo was taken.