Free Republic
Browse · Search
News/Activism
Topics · Post Article

Skip to comments.

Chicago Olympics dreams dashed
Chicago Tribune ^ | 10/4/09 | Dan Mihalopoulos

Posted on 10/03/2009 1:46:08 PM PDT by Alaphiah123

Mayor Richard Daley and his supporters hyped the 2016 Olympic bid as Chicago's best hope for a sorely needed economic boost, a once-in-a-lifetime chance to raise the city's global profile and even a way to help keep more kids from dropping out of school.

"The next five years, six years, tell me one thing that is going to have economic opportunities for any city," Daley had said in July, when asked about criticism of his Olympic dream. "If you have something better, I'd love to see it."

But Daley headed home from Denmark on Saturday without a trump card. He faces an increasingly dire budget crunch, concerns about crime and school violence -- and an approval rating at the lowest point since he was first elected two decades ago.

The 2016 Games were to be the capstone of Daley's tenure, an era in which he has reshaped Chicago as few mayors have.

After decades of effort, the city established itself as a player in the global economy. While other parts of the Midwest atrophied, Chicago's economy became more diverse. When that economy was humming and real estate values were skyrocketing, Daley used a government checkbook and unparalleled political power to deliver on his vision. He helped turn the City that Works into a town where you are just as likely to play -- Millennium Park, Navy Pier and the lakefront museum campus.

He enjoyed broad public support across the city's racial spectrum, and Chicago's population even grew slightly after decades of decline.

Chicagoans -- many of them Daley allies or acolytes -- are running the White House, and the city is still basking in the afterglow of a November election night when the world saw the best of its skyline and its people. Cont'd below

(Excerpt) Read more at chicagotribune.com ...


TOPICS: Business/Economy; News/Current Events; US: Illinois
KEYWORDS: 2016olympics; chicago; mayordaley
It was an image hometown President Barack Obama cited in pitching Chicago to the International Olympic Committee.

But the good feelings didn't translate to victory in Denmark, and back home in Chicago the goodwill and money that Daley long enjoyed have dwindled in recent months.

Daley's approval rating sank to an all-time low of 35 percent in a recent Tribune poll amid a botched parking-meter lease deal and questions about Olympic financial risks. Normally pliant aldermen began to question the mayor more aggressively.

Allies and critics saw the Olympic bid as Daley's political and economic Hail Mary pass.

"People at City Hall were talking about this like it was the only option," said Ald. Howard Brookins, 21st. "It's like there is no plan to fix these things without all of the new buildings and infrastructure and the billions of dollars of spending that the Olympics would bring to the city. Now people are going to start nitpicking over everything that is wrong in the city."

The loss of the Olympics as both a revenue generator and political rallying point leaves the 67-year-old Daley at a crossroads. Daley is set to eclipse his father's record tenure of 21 years in office next year, and he has been repeatedly asked whether the outcome of the Olympic vote would affect his decision on whether to seek re-election to a seventh term in February 2011.

As he has said in recent months, Daley on Friday insisted the vote would not influence his political future.

"This was never about Rich Daley," he told reporters Friday in Denmark. "This ... was not a political gamble. This was not a political adventure."

Daley remains the undisputed heavyweight of Chicago politics, although the rejection of the city's bid created the rare spectacle of the mayor not getting his way. The loss furthers the ability of critics to complain that Daley's long-term, laserlike focus on the Olympics came at the expense of dealing with more immediate city problems.

Even as Daley was futilely lobbying IOC members last week, stark reminders of the challenges at home interrupted his narrative.

There was the videotaped beating of a 16-year-old high school student, the third student slain in the young school year. Then a fugitive City Hall contractor who allegedly bribed Daley administration officials to get city business reappeared in the federal courthouse in Chicago.

The Olympics would have been a handy way for Daley to shift the discussion from such problems, and some supporters had even gone so far as to suggest the Olympics legacy would keep more children in school and help stem street violence.

Whether the impact of the games on average Chicagoans would have lived up to the mayor's promises will never be known. What's clear is that the failed Olympic bid robs Daley of an opportunity to act as the de facto head of a seven-year, $4.8 billion public works project. Gone are the jobs and contracts he could have used to maintain unquestioned authority.

Ald. Joe Moore, 49th, said he did not think Daley relished coming home to a $500 million deficit and "an angry and cynical electorate.

"I've always admired the mayor's ability to think big and do big things, but I do take issue with the mayor's penchant for secrecy, and I think that harmed him locally in terms of the bid," Moore said.

Daley historically has been eager and able to make decisions before asking aldermen and the public for their assent, which he almost always received anyway. That didn't seem to work as smoothly for him in the Olympic effort.

The turning point in the bid, in the public's view, may have come in June when Daley reversed course and promised IOC officials Chicago would cover any cost overruns if it were chosen to host the games.

Bid team officials and Daley aides scurried to placate aldermen, ultimately winning their unanimous blessing. But public support for the 2016 effort waned since the mayor's about-face on the financial guarantee, with a recent Tribune poll showing Chicagoans were almost equally divided over supporting the games.

Moore said the Olympic loss showed that the mayor is not invincible: "The contention that this mayor can never be defeated has often been cited, and I think this shows that is not true."

Beating Daley for the right to host the Olympics and seriously challenging his re-election remain two very different things. While more council members disagree with the mayor than did a few years ago, there still is no organized opposition bloc.

"I don't think there is going to be much political cost for Daley because of this -- it's not like there is anybody waiting to pounce on the chance," said Larry Bennett, a political science professor at DePaul University.

Still, Bennett said, "It's not going to be good for his sense of self-esteem."

The mayor seemed content to take at least a quick breather before delving back into post-Olympic Chicago. Daley has planned no public appearances during the weekend or Monday.

Tribune reporter Hal Dardick contributed to this report.

dmihalopoulos@tribune.com

1 posted on 10/03/2009 1:46:08 PM PDT by Alaphiah123
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | View Replies]

To: Alaphiah123
Olympic Fail
2 posted on 10/03/2009 1:48:39 PM PDT by Tawiskaro
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Alaphiah123

You called for Obama, with Hope, and all you got was Change. What more did you expect? That was his campaign promise.

Poor Chicago - all those bribes will go to another city.


3 posted on 10/03/2009 1:49:32 PM PDT by kingu (Party for rent - conservative opinions not required.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: kingu

Hey Chicago, I scarcely give a sh.....er, scarcely give a smelly Obama.


4 posted on 10/03/2009 1:50:12 PM PDT by Da Coyote
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 3 | View Replies]

To: Alaphiah123

We lost??? How did I miss that news?


5 posted on 10/03/2009 1:51:45 PM PDT by Right_Handed_Writer (Change the Change -- Vote Right in 2010™)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Tawiskaro

Many times throughout the day yesterday, after this announcement, I was a naughty girl and changed “Nanny Nanny Boo Boo” out loud. These idiots in the picture look more upset than many people did at the events of 9/11.


6 posted on 10/03/2009 1:54:10 PM PDT by 1951Boomer
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 2 | View Replies]

To: Alaphiah123

woot? how dare they? Obama is teh supreme communicator! His speech was so moving and stuff, and Michelle hit it out of the ballpark with her part!


7 posted on 10/03/2009 1:54:22 PM PDT by Ancient Drive (DRINK COFFEE! - Do Stupid Things Faster with More Energy!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Alaphiah123

8 posted on 10/03/2009 1:58:33 PM PDT by Berlin_Freeper (It's a Girl!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Alaphiah123

I’m just thinking about the local government, politicians, and elites in Chicago when I write this... the choice of the Olympic committee couldn’t have happened to nicer people. LOL


9 posted on 10/03/2009 1:59:38 PM PDT by redpoll
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Alaphiah123
Mayor Richard Daley and his supporters hyped the 2016 Olympic bid as Chicago's best hope for a sorely needed economic boost, a once-in-a-lifetime chance to raise the city's global profile and even a way to help keep more kids from dropping out of school.

What a load of crapola.

It was about lining the pockets of hundreds of friends and criminal cohorts of Obamarama.

Daley himself probably watched tens of millions of money he personally would have grifted fly out the window yesterday.

10 posted on 10/03/2009 2:03:02 PM PDT by dead (I've got my eye out for Mullah Omar.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Alaphiah123
The photo on Drudge is a hoot!....


11 posted on 10/03/2009 2:06:22 PM PDT by mcmuffin (Will American patriots and freedom prevail?)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Ancient Drive; Oztrich Boy

Obama’s sorry ass apologizing to the world for the last year isn’t going to do anything but show him as a punk in the World’s playground.

Would you happen to have that IOC teleprompter pic handy?


12 posted on 10/03/2009 2:07:50 PM PDT by eyedigress
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 7 | View Replies]

To: Alaphiah123

Just wait until the earthquake hits...bye bye Chicago...


13 posted on 10/03/2009 2:09:54 PM PDT by shield (A wise man's heart is at his RIGHT hand;but a fool's heart at his LEFT. Ecc 10:2)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Tawiskaro
A parade of the f*ing clueless. Picture worth a Pulitzer.
14 posted on 10/03/2009 2:12:24 PM PDT by hinckley buzzard (Truth--The liberal's Kryptonite)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 2 | View Replies]

To: Alaphiah123

“The next five years, six years, tell me one thing that is going to have economic opportunities for any city,” Daley had said in July, when asked about criticism of his Olympic dream. “If you have something better, I’d love to see it.”

..........................................

Well, Mayor,

I could make a list of things that could occupy some blocks of time for the lovely citizens of Chicago and make life way better for future generations.

1. Solidify the nuclear family and assist two parents to raise productive, honest citizens.
2. Train people to stop stealing via entitlement programs and go get some work.
3. Create a prevailing culture, political environment and business environment that doesn’t reward corruption.
4. Weaken the unions that choke everything that moves.
5. Lighten the tax load on productive citizens and businesses.
6. Create venture zones where businesses can enter and renew a declining neighborhood and hire people who want to work their way up the ladder.

Or, Mayor Daley, are you really interested in prosperity for your citizens and city?


15 posted on 10/03/2009 2:12:38 PM PDT by lurk
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Alaphiah123

No Olympic stolen money for daley and obama. Just tfb.


16 posted on 10/03/2009 2:13:03 PM PDT by freeangel ( (free speech is only good until someone else doesn't like what you say))
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Alaphiah123
HEADLINE: Chicago Olympics graft dreams dashed

There. I fixed it.

17 posted on 10/03/2009 2:15:55 PM PDT by Gritty (The simple truth is that government debt is our debt - Peter Schiff)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Alaphiah123
DUmmie FUnnies 10-03-09 ("Obama (That Bumblin' Clown)" Loses Olympics for Chicago)


OBAMA (THAT BUMBLIN' CLOWN)
Tune: "Chicago (That Toddlin' Town)"

Obama, Obama, that bumblin' clown
Obama, Obama, he will fumble around--and flub it
Bet your teleprompter he'll lose the games for Chicago, Chicago
So bad that Oprah Winfrey will have to frown

Olympics are slim picks, when Barry's your shill
You do things like lose out to Brazil
He had the task, Chicago to sell
I had to laugh, he came with Michelle
O Chicago, Obama let you down!

Obama, Obama, that bumblin' clown
Obama, Obama, he'll fumble around--and flub it
Bet your teleprompter he'll lose the games for Chicago, Chicago
So bad that Oprah Winfrey will have to frown

Olympics are slim picks, when Barry's your shill
You do things like losing out to Brazil--still
He had the task, Chicago to sell
I had to laugh when he came with Michelle
O Chicago, Obama--Obama sure let you down!

18 posted on 10/03/2009 2:22:44 PM PDT by Charles Henrickson (The wag tailoring the doggerel)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]


19 posted on 10/03/2009 2:30:13 PM PDT by eyedigress
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 12 | View Replies]

To: Alaphiah123

what the Olympics were for: to revitalize ailing neighborhoods on the South Side

Chicago’s bid for the 2016 Olympics was a neighborhood revitalization program disguised as a major sporting event. It was so cleverly disguised that it almost diverted billions in private and corporate funding to devastated African-American neighborhoods where billions in private and corporate funding would otherwise never go.

http://trueslant.com/jeffmcmahon/2009/10/03/chicago-olympic-opposition/


20 posted on 10/03/2009 2:36:03 PM PDT by kcvl
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Alaphiah123
Chicago Olympics dreams Zeroed
Fixed it.
21 posted on 10/03/2009 2:42:15 PM PDT by UnbelievingScumOnTheOtherSide (Give Them Liberty Or Give Them Death! - IT'S ISLAM, STUPID! - Islam Delenda Est! - Rumble thee forth)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: kcvl
Obamanomics, Chicago-style. I'm pleased to see the One and the Windy City receive their richly deserved comeuppance.

"Show me just what Mohammed brought that was new, and there you will find only things evil and inhuman, such as his command to spread by the sword the faith he preached." - Manuel II Palelogus

22 posted on 10/03/2009 2:42:46 PM PDT by goldstategop (In Memory Of A Dearly Beloved Friend Who Lives In My Heart Forever)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 20 | View Replies]

To: Alaphiah123
“We dropped everything – dropped everything – to be a part of this team,” she said in thanking Oprah Winfrey for joining her in the Olympic pitch. “As much of a sacrifice as people say this is for me or Oprah or the president to come for these few days,” the team has been working on this for years.
23 posted on 10/03/2009 2:48:40 PM PDT by anglian
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Tawiskaro

24 posted on 10/03/2009 2:49:48 PM PDT by gura (R-MO)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 2 | View Replies]

To: kcvl

what the Olympics were for: to revitalize ailing neighborhoods on the South Side


Interesting article, but I disagree with your stated premise. Ostensibly that may have been the “company line” on the purpose of bringing the Olympics to Chicago: to revitalize ailing neighborhoods on the South Side. Perhaps that was one of many objectives, but given the cast of characters involved (Daley, Resco, Jarrett, Obamas)—their previous political actions and baggage, and the history of corruption and patronage in Chicago, I think the more fundamental purposes for bringing the Olympics to Chicago were: 1. To provide a funding source for Daley to pay off past and future political favors, 2. Related to #1, to pay off slumlords and real estate developers who stood to gain due to various interests on the south side.

I think many of those citizens opposed to the 2016 Chicago bid would have supported a different mayor or a different city.


25 posted on 10/03/2009 3:07:13 PM PDT by bushwon ("If you think healthcare is expensive now, just wait till it is free! "~ PJ O'Rourke)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 20 | View Replies]

To: Alaphiah123

Gee, Chicago just has to resort to depending on Obama.....but his Economic record doesn’t look good....Nothing comes to mind for Economic “Accomplishments”....in fact, just the Opposite.


26 posted on 10/03/2009 3:11:44 PM PDT by 4Speed
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: gura

rofl... Obama got pawned by the Olympic commission


27 posted on 10/03/2009 3:55:01 PM PDT by Ancient Drive (DRINK COFFEE! - Do Stupid Things Faster with More Energy!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 24 | View Replies]

To: luvEastTenn

Sad, but accurate, commentary.


28 posted on 10/03/2009 4:15:59 PM PDT by rabidralph (http://www.thealaskafundtrust.com/ http://www.sarahpac.com)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 6 | View Replies]

To: Alaphiah123
Olympics for Chicago 2016 - The Cost to the People of the United States:

A - The First Lady:

1. Unhidden cost of her US aircraft to and from Copenhagen?

2. Cost and detailed list of accompanying staff currently on the US payroll?

3. Cost of accompanying staffs' accommodations, food, refreshments, local travel (taxi), Official Transportation, etc. for First Lady's party?

4. Any additional aircraft for First Lady's party, for folks like family, press, dog, Secret Service?

5. Amount Opra is reimbursing the USA for her envolvement and that of her staff for #1 - #4, above?

6. Amount the Chicago Olympic Committee is reimbursing the USA for the First Lady's envolvement and that of her staff for #1 - #4, above?

B - POTUS

1. True and total unhidden cost of Air Force One for the trip to and from Copenhagen?

2. Cost and detailed list of accompanying staff currently on the US payroll?

3. Cost of accompanying staffs' accommodations, food, refreshments, local travel (taxi), Official Transportation, etc. for the POTUS's party?

4. Any additional aircraft for POTUS's party, for folks like family, press, dog, Secret Service?

5. Cost US picking for accompanying Press Corps, including travel, accomodations, food, refreshments, etc.?

6. Cost of flying the POTUS "big black car" and the accompanying Secret Service vehicles, drivers, fuel, staff accomodations, food and refreshments?

7. Amount the Chicago Olympic Committee is reimbursing the USA for the POUS's envolvement and that of his staff for #1 - #6, above?

C - Total net expense for "A" & "B" to the USA Tax Payers?

All I ask for a a true and honest (if that is not redundant!) of this "excercise" to the American Public. I'd be interested to also know who has personal vested interests in the possible favorable outcome for this adventure, specifically relating to the possible sale of real estate and other servicees should the Chicago Olympic Committee - 2016 be successful.

That's all I ask. Starting to think of the length of time a snow flake or many snow flakes can survive in Hell while I await the answer to the forgoing questions.

When will someone in the "main stream" news business address any of these questions and share the results with us.

29 posted on 10/03/2009 5:37:15 PM PDT by jws3sticks (Sarah Palin forever!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.

Free Republic
Browse · Search
News/Activism
Topics · Post Article

FreeRepublic, LLC, PO BOX 9771, FRESNO, CA 93794
FreeRepublic.com is powered by software copyright 2000-2008 John Robinson