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Mayor Daley say's he's not gonna run !

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#1 dixiesquare

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Posted 07 September 2010 - 03:51 PM

Mayor Daley is not seeking another term


September 7, 2010

BY FRAN SPIELMAN City Hall Reporter
Steinberg: Retirement not out-of-the-blue Sweet blog: Obama on Daley's announcement Sweet blog: Rahm Emanuel 'surprised' Interactive: Navigate the Daley family tree Audio slideshow: The Daley generations Photos: The many faces of Daley
</DIV>“I have always believed that every person, especially public officials must understand when it is time to move on.
“For me that time is now.”
Daley, 68, made the announcement at City Hall, flanked by his wife, Maggie; son, Patrick, 35 daughters Elizabeth (“Lally”), 27, and Nora Conroy, 37, and son-in-law Sean Conroy.
Daley’s political future has been up in the air for months, as he gave speeches and made remarks that made it seem like he was heading toward extending the mayoral run that began in 1989.
On Dec. 26, he will become Chicago’s longest serving mayor, eclipsing the 21-year, eight-month tenure of his father, Richard J. Daley.
“The truth is I’ve been thinking about this for the last several months. And in the last several weeks I’ve been increasingly comfortable with my decision. It just feels right.”
Daley’s move opens the floodgates of potential candidates angling to succeed him.
White House advisor Rahm Emanuel ruffled feathers earlier this year when he gave signals that he was interested in the job. But the former North Side congressman quickly made it clear he would not run against Daley.
And it’s often said that the City Council has 50 potential mayoral candidates.
So far, Aldermen Bob Fioretti (2nd), Scott Waguespack (32nd), Leslie Hairston (5th) and Tom Allen (38th) have already been considering running for mayor.
Other contenders include Cook County Assessor Jim Houlihan and Sheriff Tom Dart.
“He’s in!” said a source close to Dart.
“Assessor Houlihan is very interested in being mayor,” said Jim Houlihan’s spokesman Eric Herman.
The mayor’s brother, William Daley, said the mayor’s reasons for bowing out are “as simple as he stated”: it’s time to move on.
“Contrary to what most people think, there is a Rich Daley under Mayor Daley. His attitude is, do other things, have more time. Miss you guys [in the media] dearly, but not really. The prospect of doing what you’ve been doing for 21 years of another four was not as attractive,’’ Bill Daley said.
“It’s not Maggie’s health or [the city’s] financial problems, unemployment or crime. Blaming this decision on the re-election campaign or fear he wasn’t gonna win is silly also. All of the things you go to to find a reason, there’s bits of truth in all of them. It’s not one thing. It’s an accumulation of 21 years and looking, not just at an election, but the next four years in one’s life. He’s healthy. He’s got time to do other things — or nothing.”
Bill Daley said he’s convinced his brother would have won re-election if he had chosen to seek a seventh term.
“Do I think it would have been a contest? Yes. But, nobody was gonna raise more money. Nobody starts with the same base of support. Is it a given? No. But a tough campaign did not scare him away, because, tell me who the tough opponent is,” he said.
In recent months, Richard M. Daley appeared to be making many governmental moves to shore up his record-low public approval rating.
But behind-the-scenes, he was wrestling with the decision of a lifetime and becoming more and more at peace with his decision to call it quits, his brother said.
“He didn’t say, ‘no,’ to anybody. But over the last month or so, there’s been a sense [that he would retire]. For the first time, he gave it a lot of thought. Every other time, there was never a question of will he or won’t he,” Bill Daley said.
Bill Daley is a former U.S. Commerce Secretary who has flirted with races for governor and senator, but never run for public office. That’s even though he’s a schmoozer and the natural politician of the Daley clan.
Asked Tuesday if he would consider seeking the job his brother has held since 1989, Bill Daley cut off the conversation.
“I have no plans, but I’m not gonna get into that. Today is about Rich, 21 years dedicating his life to this city and changing this city more than any mayor in the history of this city for the positive,” Bill Daley said.
“He’s made this an international city that has increased the strength of its neighborhoods. Considering where he came in, with the city totally racially-divided — he went out of his way to diminish that and work to make every neighborhood better. The parks, the streets, the schools are better. All those things have happened on his watch.”
The mayor’s stunning announcement swept through City Hall like a political earthquake.
No one was more stunned than Finance Committee Chairman Edward M. Burke (14th), a lifelong Daley ally with a multi-million campaign warchest and an unfulfilled dream of becoming mayor.
“I’m surprised at his decision. I felt that he’d be a candidate for re-election. But I’m sure his own personal challenges, his family needs weighed very heavily on his decision,’’ said Burke, 66.
Burke was asked point-blank whether he would be a candidate for mayor, as he was in 1989 before dropping out and throwing his support to Daley in the deal that restored him to the Finance Committee chair he held during “Council Wars.’’
“I haven’t really given it much thought. No,’’ he said.
Asked whether that was an unequivocal “no,’’ the alderman said, “Stay tuned,’’ he said, laughing. “It would be one of the farthest things from my mind. [But] in Chicago politics, people never close the door.’’
When a reporter noted that he had more money and more knowledge of municipal finance than any potential challenger, Burke said, “And I have a very pleasant, nice existence, which I enjoy.’’
Part of the reason why most political insiders assumed the mayor was running was because no formidable challengers — and no African-American contenders at all — had emerged to knock him off his pedestal.
Ald. Ed Smith (28th), dean of the City Council’s African-American aldermen, said that will change in a hurry — “we will make sure of that’’ — now that Daley’s retirement has altered the political landscape.
“If we can raise the money, there’s gonna be a [black] candidate. We’re not short on people who can run this town and who would get in the race. We’ve just got to raise the money. If the money can be raised, you won’t have to look far for a candidate,’’ Smith said, refusing to say whether he was interested.
Contributing: Abdon M. Pallasch

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