November 7, 2004


Daley praises GOP, slaps Democrats (Chicago Tribune, November 7, 2004)

Mayor Richard Daley backed John Kerry for president, but Daley had some admiring observations about the Republican Party after last week's elections and some chastening words for his fellow Democrats.

"I think there is political change in this country," Daley said. "You talk about Roosevelt. You talk about Kennedy. And you have to talk about Bush. You have to give credit to his discipline, to the message he stayed on line. People made fun. They underestimated him all the time. He showed them all."

"Elitists" in the Democratic Party in Washington have underestimated the religious right, Daley said.

"They don't like people who have different beliefs than they do, who maybe read the Bible, read the Koran. ... They were shoved out, not to be respected."

And the mayor decried the "hatred" on both sides of the campaign, fingering at one point billionaire financier George Soros, a Kerry supporter who funded anti-George Bush ads.

Interesting that the one state that was always most likely to go Blue this time (outside of the coasts) has the two guys who sound most determined to work with Republicans, but the Senate Democrats gave a leadership position to the Illinoisan least likely to.

Posted by Orrin Judd at November 7, 2004 11:16 AM

If Obama keeps saying things like he did today to Tim Russert on Meet the Press, the other Senate Democrats like Durbin are going to have to take him aside for a "Come to Jesus" talk, or whatever deity, wiccan icon or political thesus Senate Democrats want their fellow party members who stray off the party line to return to.

Posted by: John at November 7, 2004 12:12 PM

WLS-AM - Sundays 12-3 PM CST Teri O'Brien.

WIND just went conservative as competition and will cover more IL politics than WLS.

Obama already toed the Judiciary 60 senator line.

Daley knows which side his bread is buttered on, he wants fed money, he plays nice.

Check out Blackfive's voting horror in Ward 42 - 10 pubbie voter registrations weren't there and downtown had about 50 complaints from that ward alone.

Posted by: Sandy P at November 7, 2004 10:35 PM

You don't need a weatherman to see which way the wind is blowing.

Posted by: Lou Gots at November 8, 2004 10:43 AM

Chicago Democrats have always retained their roots in having a working and middle-class constituency as opposed to the post-1972 constituency of interest groups. The reasons is that Chicago still has a machine, and all Chicago Democrats knows what happens to a politician who doesn't have the plows out after it snows. Both reasons mean Chicago Democrats listen to the average joe rather than some academic.

When people vote Democrat in IL, they are voting for IL Democrats, not the national party. I don't know a single Democrat from IL who intended to vote for Kerry in the primaries. Many were extremely upset that it was already decided when they were able to vote.

Posted by: Chris Durnell at November 8, 2004 11:01 AM

...but the Senate Democrats gave a leadership position to the Illinoisan least likely to.

Ees Party Loyalty, Comrade.

The Party,
The Party,
The Party,
The Party,
The Party...

Posted by: Ken at November 8, 2004 12:44 PM

Michael Barone, in one of the old editions of the Almanac of American Politics, wrote of Congressman Henry Yates (who represented Hyde Park and the surrounding areas), that (old) Mayor Daley viewed the liberals as just another tribe to be placated, like the Irish or the Slovaks.
One of the more recent bios of JFK (the 1960 one) also mentioned that neither he nor Bobby ever really liked or trusted the liberal, "egghead" types such as Eleanor Roosevelt or Adlai Stevenson, and referred to them dismissively as "honkers", which (IIRC) referred to their constant whining.

Posted by: David Hecht at December 1, 2004 11:18 PM

Chris Durnell,

You hit the nail on the head. There is a huge gulf between Chicago Democrats and blue state liberals that is not accounted for in any blue/red state analysis. Chicagoans, with the exception of Gold Coast and out-of-town liberal elites, are almost reflexively Democrat voters rather than classic liberals. I think Patrick Daley's decision to enlist has been and will continue to be very well received in the city. These are they kinds of people Chicagoans respect.

Posted by: the wolf at December 2, 2004 12:38 AM

To add to Chris's statement, those who vote Democrat in IL are voting against IL Republicans, not the national party. The IL GOP is in a complete shambles, due to the license-for-bribes scandal, the Ryan sex scandal, Alan Keyes, Betty Loren-Maltese, and a string of other disasters. In much of the area in and around Chicago, the GOP is little more than a willing participant in the Democrat machine. And this is coming from an ardent Bush supporter who can't imagine ever voting Democrat.

Posted by: Josh Persons at December 2, 2004 2:11 AM

All the previous comments from Chicagoans hit the nail on the head. For all its pretensions to world-class cosmopolitanism, this town is still the home of traditional Democrats who believe in hard work, the importance of family and faith, and hanging the flag out in front of the bungalow on national holidays.

Chicago practically invented the Reagan Democrat. Say what you will about Daley, he's an astute politician (like his father) who knows that the first rule of being a successful pol is to understand your constituency.

Posted by: Gregory Sager at December 2, 2004 5:22 AM

"...this town is still the home of traditional Democrats who believe in hard work..."

Yep, must be hard work to scam the welfare system while retaining a pachouli-eating
non-bathing lifestyle.

To paraphrase Mark Twain, you could be a Democrat or you could be a traitor, but I repeat myself.

Posted by: Bo at December 2, 2004 7:42 AM


What is the gist of your comment? I lived in Chicago for twelve years (Roosevelt and Damen) and still commute there everyday. I would say that Greg hit it square on the head. Of course the Aldermen and women who have large Public housing complexes in their wards want to keep the Fed dollars flowing and keep their constituents voting for them.

An accurate description of Chicago would be a small town that has big buildings.

Posted by: Richard Cook at December 2, 2004 9:32 AM

Daley sees himself as the Bush of Chicago. Criticized for mangled English (actually worse than Bush), trying to fit into Daddy's shoes, laughed at, accused of being corrupt, etc. So Daley's glowing praise (no other Dem came close to this level of praise) is his indirect way of spitting on the elites of the party.

I wonder if he really didn't vote for W.

Posted by: chicago mike at December 2, 2004 3:11 PM