When Chicago alderwoman Rossana Rodriguez Sanchez heard that the former Chicago mayor was Rahm Emanuel considered She wrote one for another position in another democratic government open letter I urge President-elect Joe Biden and Vice-President-elect Kamala Harris to put Emanuel on the “DO NOT EMPLOY” list.
The letter evolved into a petition that lasted until Tuesday afternoon almost 4,000 signaturesand Rodriguez Sanchez says the messages she has heard from voters in the city where Emanuel served two scandal-ridden terms as mayor are clear in her opposition. “It’s amazing,” she said The nation. “People say, ‘Never! Never! Never! We don’t want this man in the cabinet. ”
The prospect of Emanuel being won as Minister of Transport or Minister of Housing and Urban Development has drawn a lot of national criticism from progressives who remember his terms in office the union bashing neoliberal advisor to President Bill Clinton during the battle for the North American Free Trade Agreementand as the Obama administration’s chief of staff who is famous spat profanity among progressives who wanted to be more committed to robust health reforms. Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez said After the November 3rd election: “Someone like Rahm Emanuel would be a pretty controversial choice. And it would signal, I think, a hostile attitude towards the grassroots and progressive wing of the party. “Co-founder of Dream Defenders Phillip Agnew, who served as senior advisor to Bernie Sanders’ 2020 presidential campaign, said in a recently Haymarket Books Forum“As hard as we were against Betsy DeVos, we should go against Rahm Emanuel.”
The strongest reaction to the floating Emanuel’s name came from elected officials in Chicago who haven’t forgotten how the former mayor ruled.
“Here in Chicago we know firsthand the damage Rahm Emanuel did to our city, our services, institutions and people as mayor.” says Illinois State Representative Delia Ramirez. “It is absurd and insulting that Emanuel is being considered for a cabinet position in the Biden administration.”
Chicago councilor Carlos Ramirez-Rosa has argued that Emanuel is uniquely unsuitable for the cabinet positions he claims to be able to fill. tweetAs Mayor of Chicago, Rahm Emanuel campaigned for policies that ousted the record number of working poor Chicagoans. The thought of Emanuel as Biden’s Minister of Housing offends the mostly black and brown Chicagoans who have been harmed by Emanuel’s racist housing policy.As Mayor of Chicago cream Emanuel’s big transportation idea was to give Elon Musk public funding to get a car into an overpriced and unnecessary tunnel from downtown to O’Hare Airport. The thought of Emanuel as Biden’s transport minister is stupid. “
Ramirez-Rosa has advanced across the country promoting the # EmbraceTheBase message that Biden should “run an administration of competent progressive governance, not old-school political patronage”.
Alderwoman Rodriguez Sanchez has brought together many of the concerns in her letter and the petition she developed with other activists.
This petition First, he explains, “As residents of Chicago – and community organizers, local elected officials, union members, and others who are all too familiar with his work – we are writing to U.N– strongly recommend cream. If you want to root out systemic racism, defend democracy and build a society that leaves no one behind – all worthy goals mentioned in your victory speech – there are few people we can imagine worse for the job than the man who does earned the nickname “mayor” 1%. ‘”
Then it becomes specific to “Rahm’s résumé in some key policy areas”:
- Covered up the police murder of 17-year-old Laquan McDonald in 2014. Laquan McDonalds murder– The police shot him 16 times, including while he was on the ground – was a catalyst for the Black Lives Matter movement and Rahms political future doomed to fail In the city.
- 50 primary schools closed-the largest school closure in US history – over an outcry by parents, students, and community members. Most schools served African American children on the south and west sides of the city.
- Half of Chicago’s public mental health clinics have closed, Leaving Patients in need of care literally sitting on the sidewalk in front of the locked doors asking for help.
- Lavish affluent neighborhoods and pet projects with public dollars through Tax Increment Financing (TIF). Rahms greatest TIF hits – this is a economic development tool intended to fight the “epidemic” mind you – include $ 55 million to buy DePaul University a new basketball stadiummillions to Navy Pier through a sophisticated shell game and an additional $ 1.3 billion in subsidies for luxury mega-developments on the way to the door.
- The city’s promises to rebuild social housing have been repeatedly brokenwhile block a prescription Improve transparency in the mismanaged Chicago Housing Authority. The Lack of affordable housing, combined with staggering and deeply regressive Property tax increases were Factors in the exodus of tens of thousands of black residents from Chicago during his tenure.
- Played up a failed plan to build an express train from downtown Chicago to O’Hare Airport bypass transit used by actual Chicagoans. The boondoggle hatched from campaign donor Elon Musk was widespread. One city council called it a scheme “Mainly for tourists and Musk’s reputation.”
- Supervised a police station that cost taxpayers more than $ 540 million to the Settlements for Abuse and Misconduct during his tenure.
- Rejected public referendums calling for an elected school authority, instead handpicked school principals as Barbara Byrd-Bennett, who was sent to federal prison after pleading guilty to a multi-million dollar setback involving Chicago Public Schools money.
- Went on privatizationtoo disastrous effect. Sell everything from School caretaker services to Garbage collectionThe privatization left Chicago with outrages such as dirty classroom and one of the largest in the nation abysmal recycling rates.
The petition ends in the blunt language of Chicago politics: “Given his track record, it would be a disaster for many communities that contributed to Donald Trump’s defeat to give Rahm Emanuel a cabinet position in the new administration. Last but not least, it is a Sears Tower-sized insult to our city of Chicago, where we continue to grapple with the implications of its legacy on a daily basis. Take the word of the city that knows him best: we don’t want him here, but we don’t want him near the White House either. ”