Chicago needs a crime-fighting candidate to run against incumbent Rahm Emanuel in next year’s mayoral election.
To be clear, that candidate cannot be Garry McCarthy. A former Chicago police chief running against Emanuel, McCarthy is too close to the Chicago police department’s orthodoxy, and he presided over manipulated crime data.
Still, considering Emanuel’s utter failure to address his city’s war-zone-like shooting rates, the need for change is real. According to ABC’s local Chicago station, 66 people were shot — 12 fatally — over the weekend. Think about that, 66 different people. And what has Mayor Rahmbo’s response to the melee been? To issue emotional platitudes like this one on Monday: “All of us who love this city and call it home have a responsibility to heal our neighborhoods.”
Where’s the urgency against criminality and the openness to reforming the police department?
Just like the positive budget track that Chicago needs to be able to hire more police officers, it’s nowhere to be seen. After all, Chicago’s budgetary forecast is an unmitigated disaster. As the Chicago Sun Times reported last November, “By the city’s own estimate, police and fire pension costs will rise by $297.3 million — or 36 percent — in 2020. The Municipal and Laborers plan costs will grow by $330.4 million, or 50 percent, in fiscal 2022.” The Sun Times continued, “Chicago taxpayers already have been hit with nearly $1.1 billion in property tax increases, primarily for police, fire and teacher pensions and school construction; a 29.5 percent tax on water and sewer bills to save the Municipal Employees pension fund; and a 56 percent telephone tax hike in 2014 and another 28.2 percent next year for the Laborers pension fund.”