A Daley Endorsement Against Stroger?

July 2, 2009

Earlier this week, Michael Sneed of the Sun-Times delivered this gem:

Sneed hears Mayor Daley has not only pulled the plug on supporting embattled Cook County Board President Todd Stroger for re-election, but he has hatched plans to back Ald. Toni Preckwinkle for the Cook County Board presidency.

The item appeared in the paper Wednesday morning. The day before, at the city council meeting, I saw Preckwinkle and Daley chatting in the back room of the chamber. Preckwinkle's campaign spokesperson, John Keller, says he doesn't know specifically what the alderman and mayor were talking about then, but he read this statement to me"¦

Toni has discussed the race with the mayor several times, and right now we are lining the support from elected officials from across the county.

It's important to note that Preckwinkle is often among a handful of aldermen causing occasional headaches for Daley. Here she is at Wednesday's meeting complaining about the city budget staff's response to questions related to proposed furlough days. Preckwinkle on furlough plan Board President Stroger's spokesperson Sean Howard says Stroger's not commenting on anything related to politics right now:

There will be a time and place for that, and [Stroger] will address that at that time.

And here's Mayor Daley's somewhat obvious response to Sneed's column: Daley on endorsement A little background here: When the Cook County Board was fighting this spring over whether to roll back the Cook County sales tax increase pushed through by Stroger, Daley weighed-in, calling the increase "detrimental" and "very very questionable." (Daley's brother, Cook County Board Finance Committee Chairman John Daley, had voted to repeal the tax hike, much to Stroger's annoyance.) The mayor's comments appeared all over the place, then he tried to clear things up, saying, "All of a sudden you're trying to get me fighting with Todd Stroger"¦ [My problem] is not with him personally or his political life." In related news, Congressman Danny Davis is holding a press conference this Sunday outside the old Cook County Hospital. If that doesn't show how clear his intentions are, here's a blurb posted recently to www.davisforcookcountyboardpresident.com:

Within a few weeks, we will announce an exploratory committee for Cook County Board President.

The list of candidates who have confirmed they're running or considering a run now includes: Stroger, Preckwinkle, Davis, Commissioners Larry Suffredin and Tony Peraica, Sheriff Tom Dart and clerk of courts Dorothy Brown.
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