Barack Obama, Chicago mayor?

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Barack Obama, Chicago mayor?

By John Ruberry

Early next year the first round of the Chicago may­oral elec­tion will be held, If no can­di­date achieves a major­ity, then the top two face each other in a runoff.

The two-​term incum­bent, Rahm Emanuel, Pres­i­dent Obama’s first chief of staff, is run­ning, as are sev­eral other can­di­dates, each with bag­gage, includ­ing for­mer Chicago Police super­in­ten­dent Garry McCarthy, who Emanuel fired after the details of the shoot­ing of Laquan McDon­ald became pub­lic, polit­i­cal gad­fly and ex-​Chicago Pub­lic Schools head Paul Val­las, and Cook County Cir­cuit Court Clerk Dorothy Brown, whose office is under fed­eral investigation.

There is a one per­son who could wipe the floor with Rahm and these other can­di­dates and eas­ily avoid a runoff. Take a look at his resume: He served in the Illi­nois state sen­ate and the US Sen­ate He held an exec­u­tive polit­i­cal office for eight years. He is loved by many busi­ness lead­ers, in fact, his smart­phone is prob­a­bly packed with the pri­vate phone num­bers of hun­dreds of CEOs. He is quite adept at polit­i­cal fundrais­ing. This man has a solid base in Chicago and beyond, in fact, he is one of the most adored peo­ple on the planet.

Of course I’m talk­ing about Barack Obama, the 44th pres­i­dent of the United States. After Chicago’s most vio­lent week­end of the year, Emanuel was hap­less as he tried to act as the healer. On the other hand, such touchy-​feely stuff comes nat­ural to Obama. When the House and Sen­ate was in Demo­c­ra­tic con­trol, Obama was quite skill­ful – to be fair, Emanuel helped – in push­ing his left-​wing agenda. When the House and then the Sen­ate became Republican-​majority bod­ies, Obama’s magic van­ished. But no wor­ries – of Chicago’s 50 alder­man, 49 are Democrats.

[cap­tion id=“attachment_61593” align=“alignleft” width=“216”] Chicago’s North­west Side[/caption]

Obama, with his sonorous voice, like Liam Neeson’s Aslan char­ac­ter from the Nar­nia series, can give Chicago’s 2.7 million-​and-​declining res­i­dents feel-​good speeches on demand. Of course a half-​hour later, it’s hard to recall what Obama actu­ally said in those pep talks, other than “hope and change.”

But what about Chicago’s prob­lems? They are legion – besides the mur­der count, Chicago suf­fers more mur­ders annu­ally than New York City and Los Ange­les com­bined. The spike in Chicago’s mur­der rate. not coin­ci­den­tally, began after the city signed on to an ACLU decree in 2015 that greatly decreased stop-​and-​frisks. Arrests went down. Mur­ders went up. Chicago’s pub­lic schools, which Val­las of course used to run, are among the worst in the nation. The var­i­ous pen­sion sys­tems in Chicago, are among America’s most poorly funded pub­lic retire­ment sys­tems. Pen­sions for decades have been a way for Chicago politi­cians to uti­lize as a kick-​the-​can-​down-​the-​road sys­tem to reward their union pals. Emanuel and the City Coun­cil have been rais­ing prop­erty taxes in an attempt, prob­a­bly futile, to dig Chicago out of this pen­sion hole.

What else? Chicagoans pay the high­est sales tax rate in Amer­ica. There is even a tax on plas­tic bags. Red-​light cam­eras are seem­ingly every­where. The cam­eras, we are told. are there to deter speed­ing and pre­vent acci­dents, Chicago’s decrepit streets should be an encour­age­ment enough to obey the speed limit and arguably red-​light cam­eras cause accidents.

Chicago is a mis­er­able place to live in but it’s prob­lems are not intractable. Unless, that is, you are a left­ist mayor. Let’s start with crime “If you want crime to go up,” Jeff Ses­sions said a few months ago, “let the ACLU run the police depart­ment. If you want pub­lic safety, call the pro­fes­sion­als.” But would a Mayor Obama cross his beloved ACLU.? Of course not. Let’s move on to pen­sions. I believe that Chicago is near the tip­ping point where tax increases will bring neg­a­tive returns. More peo­ple will move out, prop­erty val­ues will decline, and then it will become a free-​fall. The pen­sion guar­an­tee in the Illi­nois con­sti­tu­tion needs to removed, which is some­thing that Jeanne Ives, who nar­rowly lost to incum­bent gov­er­nor Bruce Rauner, favors. But a Mayor Obama would never used the bully pul­pit to fight for this kind of change.

Oh, on a side note, I have sev­eral friends and rel­a­tives col­lect­ing munic­i­pal and state pen­sions. Yes, a pen­sion is a promise, but please direct your anger at the pols who cre­ated this mess.

In The Simp­sons Movie, Homer is handed $1,000 when he crosses the Alaskan bor­der. In Chicago people’s pock­ets are seem­ingly picked by that same amount when they enter the city lim­its. Chicago has always been a place where government-​sanctioned grifters run amok.


Lib­er­als love high taxes because it gives them more money to unleash their social engi­neer­ing schemes. So please don’t imag­ine that a Mayor Obama could be a tax-​cutter.

But lower taxes – includ­ing the elim­i­na­tion of nui­sance taxes – will make Chicago a more liv­able place and the type of city Amer­i­cans will flock to, once the other prob­lems Chicago faces are dealt with. And gov­ern­ment rev­enues will go up, as public-​officials are a poor spender of monies. Mean­while, some Chicago lib­er­als have bandied about “solu­tions” to its fis­cal calamity that include a munic­i­pal income tax and a com­muter tax. Ask Detroit how those are work­ing out for it.

[cap­tion id=“attachment_95046” align=“alignright” width=“300”] Blog­ger in down­town Chicago[/caption]

So yes, Barack Obama will not run for mayor of Chicago. Sure, he prob­a­bly sees any job other than pres­i­dent of the world beneath him. But also, if he has an hon­est moment with him­self, he’ll ascer­tain that if he adheres to his left­ist dogma as Chicago’s mayor, he’ll be set­ting him­self up for failure.

And he’ll be set­ting Chicago up for even more failure.

John Ruberry reg­u­larly blogs from the Chicago area at Marathon Pun­dit.

By John Ruberry

Early next year the first round of the Chicago mayoral election will be held, If no candidate achieves a majority, then the top two face each other in a runoff.

The two-term incumbent, Rahm Emanuel, President Obama’s first chief of staff, is running, as are several other candidates, each with baggage, including former Chicago Police superintendent Garry McCarthy, who Emanuel fired after the details of the shooting of Laquan McDonald became public, political gadfly and ex-Chicago Public Schools head Paul Vallas, and Cook County Circuit Court Clerk Dorothy Brown, whose office is under federal investigation.

There is a one person who could wipe the floor with Rahm and these other candidates and easily avoid a runoff. Take a look at his resume: He served in the Illinois state senate and the US Senate He held an executive political office for eight years. He is loved by many business leaders, in fact, his smartphone is probably packed with the private phone numbers of hundreds of CEOs. He is quite adept at political fundraising. This man has a solid base in Chicago and beyond, in fact, he is one of the most adored people on the planet.

Of course I’m talking about Barack Obama, the 44th president of the United States. After Chicago’s most violent weekend of the year, Emanuel was hapless as he tried to act as the healer. On the other hand, such touchy-feely stuff comes natural to Obama. When the House and Senate was in Democratic control, Obama was quite skillful–to be fair, Emanuel helped–in pushing his left-wing agenda.  When the House and then the Senate became Republican-majority bodies, Obama’s magic vanished. But no worries–of Chicago’s 50 alderman, 49 are Democrats.

Chicago’s Northwest Side

Obama, with his sonorous voice, like Liam Neeson’s Aslan character from the Narnia series, can give Chicago’s 2.7 million-and-declining residents feel-good speeches on demand. Of course a half-hour later, it’s hard to recall what Obama actually said in those pep talks, other than “hope and change.”

But what about Chicago’s problems? They are legion–besides the murder count, Chicago suffers more murders annually than New York City and Los Angeles combined. The spike in Chicago’s murder rate. not coincidentally, began after the city signed on to an ACLU decree in 2015 that greatly decreased stop-and-frisks. Arrests went down. Murders went up. Chicago’s public schools, which Vallas of course used to run, are among the worst in the nation. The various pension systems in Chicago, are among America’s most poorly funded public retirement systems. Pensions for decades have been a way for Chicago politicians to utilize as a kick-the-can-down-the-road system to reward their union pals. Emanuel and the City Council have been raising property taxes in an attempt, probably futile, to dig Chicago out of this pension hole.

What else? Chicagoans pay the highest sales tax rate in America. There is even a tax on plastic bags. Red-light cameras are seemingly everywhere. The cameras, we are told. are there to deter speeding and prevent accidents, Chicago’s decrepit streets should be an encouragement enough to obey the speed limit and arguably red-light cameras cause accidents.

Chicago is a miserable place to live in but it’s problems are not intractable. Unless, that is, you are a leftist mayor. Let’s start with crime “If you want crime to go up,” Jeff Sessions said a few months ago, “let the ACLU run the police department. If you want public safety, call the professionals.” But would a Mayor Obama cross his beloved ACLU.? Of course not. Let’s move on to pensions. I believe that Chicago is near the tipping point where tax increases will bring negative returns. More people will move out, property values will decline, and then it will become a free-fall. The pension guarantee in the Illinois constitution needs to removed, which is something that Jeanne Ives, who narrowly lost to incumbent governor Bruce Rauner, favors. But a Mayor Obama would never used the bully pulpit to fight for this kind of change.

Oh, on a side note, I have several friends and relatives collecting municipal and state pensions. Yes, a pension is a promise, but please direct your anger at the pols who created this mess.

In The Simpsons Movie, Homer is handed $1,000 when he crosses the Alaskan border. In Chicago people’s pockets are seemingly picked by that same amount when they enter the city limits. Chicago has always been a place where government-sanctioned grifters run amok.


Liberals love high taxes because it gives them more money to unleash their social engineering schemes. So please don’t imagine that a Mayor Obama could be a tax-cutter.

But lower taxes–including the elimination of nuisance taxes–will make Chicago a more livable place and the type of city Americans will flock to, once the other problems Chicago faces are dealt with. And government revenues will go up, as public-officials are a poor spender of monies. Meanwhile, some Chicago liberals have bandied about “solutions” to its fiscal calamity that include a municipal income tax and a commuter tax. Ask Detroit how those are working out for it.

Blogger in downtown Chicago

So yes, Barack Obama will not run for mayor of Chicago. Sure, he probably sees any job other than president of the world beneath him. But also, if he has an honest moment with himself, he’ll ascertain that if he adheres to his leftist dogma as Chicago’s mayor, he’ll be setting himself up for failure.

And he’ll be setting Chicago up for even more failure.

John Ruberry regularly blogs from the Chicago area at Marathon Pundit.