WASHINGTON ó My campaign for mayor of Chicago against Rahm Emanuel is getting underway. I already announced on Sean Hannityís nationally televised program and have Seanís endorsement. After careful consideration, Rush will undoubtedly be aboard and Mark Levin and, of course, the Tea Partiers.
Moreover, I already have two major newspapers endorsing me, The New York Sun, which was very kind in noting my talents and relative integrity compared to the opposition, and the Washington Timesóalso very kind. Neither had a good word to say for Emanuel. Perhaps more endorsements are coming. Frankly, I would not be surprised if both the Chicago Tribune and the Chicago Sun Times endorsed my candidacy. I am as clean as a houndís tooth.
One can understand the antipathy of the press. It generally sides with good government and clean politics. Rahmís connections with the disgraced ex-governor Rod Blagojevich are a matter of record. You will not catch me on the telephone with Blagojevich.
Then too, Rahm has a way of running out on people. He ran out on President Bill Clinton in October 1998, leaving his advisory position at the What House just before the big lovable lug of a President was impeached. He ran out on President Obama in September, giving up his chief of staff post just before the poor sap lost sixty plus seats in the House of Representatives in the greatest midterm rout of either party since 1938.
One thing that has not been given proper attention is that Rahm acted on the spur of the moment. On September 7 Mayor Richard M. Daley surprised everyone and declined to run for reelection. That was when Rahm jumped in, thinking he could reclaim the home that he had leased to a patriot, Rob Halpin, in 2009. Proof of how recent Rahmís decision was to run for mayor is that Mr. Halpin signed a lease extension in September.
A few days later Rahm made his decision and with his usual charm thought he could bully Mr. Halpin out of the house. Now Mr. Halpin himself is running for mayor, and the 59-year-old real-estate developer made clear his hard feelings toward Rahm when he told the Wall Street Journal, ďMaybe Iím just as tough as Rahm.Ē
What makes Rahmís residence problem all the more curious is that that after he left Clintonís White House he made a cool $18 million in a little over two years on Wall Street, a personal fortune that in Chicago raises no eyebrows but to most Americans sounds like the infamous ďrevolving door.Ē So why was Rahm so greedy? Why could he not keep his home open? Was it lack of forethought? No intention of returning? Did someone make off with that $18 million?
Thus far there are no lawsuits questioning my residency in Chicago, which is similar to Rahmís. We have hardly spent a night in our hometown since 2009. That is in breach of a law that requires a candidate to reside in Chicago for a year before running for office. For his part, Rahm has attracted several lawsuits challenging his residency.
The most formidable is from Burt Odelson, a Chicago attorney and expert on election law. He represents two petitioners, Walter P. Maksym and Thomas McMahon. They never were treated as rudely as Mr. Halpin by Rahm, but they apparently do take the rule of law seriously. Rahm has not lived in Chicago for a year. His home is inhabited by Mr. Halpin. Case closed.
As for Rahm and me, he is listed near the top of the declared candidates by the Chicago News Cooperative and has 90,000 signatures. I am listed near the bottom with no signatories, not one. Where did Rahm get 90,000 signatures, and why the nice round number? As for my signatories I have no friends in the unions or riding the cityís garbage trucks. I have made no political deals and am beholden to no interest groups. I rest my case. I am as clean as a houndís tooth. Maybe that will be my slogan, a sketch of a houndís tooth. Need I say more?
Mr. Tyrrell, founder and editor-in-chief of The American Spectator, is a contributing editor of The New York Sun.