CHICAGO is losing its long-time Mayor Richard M. Daley, next month. While he surpassed his dad’s long run in office by only five months, if he serves out his term ending May 16, 2011, he will have been Mayor of Chicago for just over 22 years.
Between father and son, the Daley’s have been in charge of Chicago for 42 of the past 55 years. This is amazing accomplishment, but hopefully it will not happen again in our lifetimes. With a family having so much power in one city for a such a long length of time, change is unlikely and power is too great. If the President of the United States can only serve for two terms (8 years), how is it a Mayor can serve for decades?
While Mayor Daley was instrumental in making our great city shine on many occasions, he also did things NOT to be proud of during office. It seemed like his last few years in office is when he made the most mistakes. Leasing our parking meters, huge mistake. Leasing our tolls, huge mistake. Eliminating Meigs Field, huge mistake. Spending too much in a variety of areas, huge mistake. Inability to secure the Olympics, huge mistake.
Daley will leave a legacy behind, and certainly cared greatly for Chicago, to stay in office so many years. It is just unfortunate he finished his career with so many bumps and no real care for what the people really wanted on so many major issues. No disrespect to the Mayor, no one is perfect, but some of this could have been avoided.
It sickens me each time I have to pay $8 to park on the street in the city. It sickens me when I have to pay so much for a toll. So I am looking forward to new blood taking office in May. Hopefully Rahm Emanuel can offer us a change in the right direction. But at some point, hopefully there will be changes in the law, limiting the maximum time in office for our Mayor.
Although Mayor Daley had his bumps along the way, he did some great things for the city as well and served us for a very long time. Wishing the Daleys’ the very best, and hoping they will retire in Florida (just kidding). Maggie Daley was a great support and she deserves “big props” from the City of Chicago.
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