Rahm's attempt to clean up his mess parallels and sounds remarkably similar to Mitt Romney's pathetic attempt at damage control over his "off the cuff" remarks to funders claiming that half of us are parasites who pay no taxes. The problem for both Rahm and Mitt is that the more they talk the worse it gets.
Newstips Curtis Black has a great column, "Strike Notes", in which he quotes veteran Chicago political analyst Don Rose:
“The bottom line,” he argues at the Chicago Daily Observer, “is that Emanuel is out of the running as a presidential or vice-presidential candidate in 2016.” Maybe you can run without labor support, but running against active labor opposition is something else.Black writes:
Mayor Emanuel has his own public relations conundrum at this point, and it’s not just a matter of rhetoric: he (and the business leaders and newspapers) are claiming that in order to pay for the new contract, they’re going to have to close down schools. In the meantime they’re planning to open up 60 new charter schools. In fact, this year’s budget has an additional $76 million for charters, which cost the district well over $500 million a year.Black nails it.
“We’re kind of confused about that,” said Wendy Katten of the Raise Your Hand Coalition. “If they’re claiming they have 130,000 unfilled seats in the district, why are they opening 60 new schools? That’s crazy. That’s just absurd.”
How to make the case? Always ready to help, the Tribune offers this line of argument:: charter schools are the best tool for busting the teachers union. Bruce Rauner, private equity mogul and major charter sponsor, chimes in that the goal is “separating teachers from the union.”