Emanuel, Tomczak and the Chicago Machine

John Kass is curious about Rahm Emanuel's relationship with Don Tomczak, and perhaps we should be too.

Loneliness is an ATM

Emanuel makes a point of airing peeve | Chicago Tribune ... if City Hall had not sent Don Tomczak, the corrupt city water department boss, to Emanuel's congressional campaign in 2002--and Tomczak's political army of hundreds of city workers who stumped the precincts with the promise of overtime--then Emanuel wouldn't have narrowly defeated a local grass-roots Democrat. And Emanuel wouldn't have been in a position to bask in all the national media love.

The national media narratives involving Emanuel and another Chicago Democrat, U.S. Sen. Barack Obama (D-Rezko), have already been approved and written. They're scripts to congeal the national mind, not to be deviated from in polite society. So you're not supposed to mention the soon-to-be imprisoned Tomczak around Emanuel.

And never, ever mention the indicted Chicago political Real Estate Fairy, Tony Rezko, to Obama, or ask if Rezko sprinkled magic fairy dust just as Obama purchased his fine home for hundreds of thousands of dollars less than the asking price. So, the national story lines have been completed, and uttering “Tomczak” or “Real Estate Fairy” is considered almost rude.

But in federal court the day before, I watched four of Mayor Richard Daley's underlings sentenced to federal prison for their roles in amassing giant and illegal patronage armies of city workers who pounded the precincts for the mayor's candidates, including Emanuel.

patronage armies are political guns, projecting power and control. They provide leverage for the friends of City Hall, men who've made fortunes hauling in taxpayer money in deals involving trucking, insurance, real estate, waste, wrought iron fencing, development and on and on.

And all I wanted to know from political operative Emanuel was this: Who sent Tomczak's army?


Yes, was it Mayor Daley? Or Billy Daley, or [mayoral brain] Tim Degnan? Who?

“I don't know.”

Of course you do.

“That's your question?”

Yes, that's the question, I said.

“No, that's your question,” Emanuel said, repeatedly declining to answer. “That isn't `the' question. That's `a' question, it's your question, not my question.”

If he's more than (D-Tomczak), it's quite possible that he's (D-Philosopher).

Who knows, perhaps nothing, but not answering means Emanuel isn't sure of how to respond, and that's suspicious. Emanuel is a notorious, self-annointed quick wit, and loud mouth, but not yesterday in the Tribune newsroom. Hmmm.

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This page contains a single entry by Seth A. published on November 22, 2006 1:34 PM.

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