When I first saw the headline quote, I thought it was about Jody Weis or one of the aldermen. The quote, by Arthur Hardy Jr., is about Bishop C.L. Sparks. Hardy is the homeless man who circulated mayoral nominating petitions for James Meeks and Ron Halpin. He was hired by the good reverend, who owns a company called Sparks Group LLC.
There is another company involved, described on their business card as A-Team Political Campaign Unit, “circulators of petitions, canvassing and posterizing. Posterizing? You can’t make this stuff up.
The notary claims her signature and notary seal were forged. Challengers to the candidates claim many signatures on the petitions are fake.
None of this is new. It goes on every election cycle. People are paid to gather signatures. Some do it legitimately, some do not. Sometimes they slip through and sometimes they get caught. It is perfectly legal- except for fake signatures and forgery.
What makes all this unique are Rahm Emanuel, James Meeks, and Ron Halpin. Rahm Emanuel is the political rock star running for mayor. Meeks is also running. He is well known for his media appearances, especially when he discusses education. Halpin is a real estate investor who is renting and living in Rahm’s house.
Halpin was convinced to pull a political stunt to run for mayor by a group of operatives. Had they done it three weeks earlier it may have made sense. But, they tried to get his signatures just days before the deadline. Halpin got a million dollars worth of publicity and fifteen minutes of fame, which is dwindling fast.
Chicago elections are like this. It’s the norm. If rock star Rahm was not running, this would be just a blip on the media radar. This election will be pure entertainment. The media is geared up to elect the rock star mayor.
This election will be scrutined more closely than any other election in recent history. Emanuel is running. He has come to save the Machine from its past sins. He has come to run Obama’s reelection from the fifth floor of city hall. He is wanted, he is needed, he is expected. It was predicted.
If Emanuel does not win, there will be municipal Armageddon. The rapture will finally arrive in Chicago. The city council will sleep with the fish. Political pestilence and plague will engulf the city. There will be wailing and gnashing of teeth.
This whole media blitz and so called examination are giving Rahm Emanuel plenty of earned media. This campaign will provide us with plenty of entertainment.
So, just sit back, relax, and enjoy the show. Vaudeville has returned to Chicago.
Source: Mark Brown Sun Times