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Chicago Mayoral Election Should Scare the Democrats in Washington

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Chicago Mayoral Election Should Scare the Democrats in Washington

Chicago Mayoral Election Should Scare the Democrats in Washington
March 04
15:00 2019

19 0228 DWP Chicago election a lesson for Dem establishment geo

Chicago mayoral election should scare the Democrats in Washington

It is just a numbers game.  No matter what you think of Trump as president, he only got there because of the large Republican field of candidates.  In those early GOP primaries in 2016, 65 to 70 percent of Republican voters favored someone other than Trump.  The advantage for Trump was that all those other candidates divided up the vote and enabled him to win with the largest plurality — never a majority until later campaigns when Trump had built up an insurmountable lead.

It is also arguable that Trump even won the General Election because third-party candidates took enough votes away from Hillary Clinton to enable Trump to win critical electoral votes in key states.

Way back in 1968, the late conservative Congressman Phil Crane won a Republican nomination – and eventually the congressional seat – in a liberal to moderate Republican district because he had a small plurality in the primary election against an 11-candidate field – virtually all moderate to liberal Republicans.

In Chicago, Cook County Chairman Toni Preckwinkle topped a field of 14 candidates in the Democrat primary with only 17.5 percent of the total vote.  In Chicago, the top two contenders will now face off in a subsequent election. Preckwinkle’s opponent will be corporate lawyer Lori Lightfoot, who garnered only 16.1 percent of the vote.  Both are successful black women.

What is notable is that with mostly support from the large black community in Chicago, Preckwinkle and Lightfoot defeated such Democrat machine candidates as Bill Daley, former President Obama’s Chief of Staff, former Secretary of Commerce for President Clinton and a member of the fabled Daley machine – the son and brother of two of the longest-term mayors. Daley came in with a 16.7 percent of the vote – less than one percent out of the run-off.

Other major candidates who would have otherwise been considered potential frontrunners were former Chicago Board of Education President Paul Vallas, attorney and former mayoral candidate Gery Chico,  Jerry Joyce, a member of an Irish family second only to the Daleys in power and influence and former Chicago Police Commissioner Garry McCarthy.

In short, the old guard in the Democrat establishment in Chicago has been upended.  Ironically, they were not beaten among the voters by general preference.  They were defeated by a technical win in a system that does not generally reflect public will when there are a large field of candidates.

It is ironic that Mayor Dick Daley changed the Chicago elections from a Democrat/Republican contest to the independent model – with the run-off provision – to prevent the election of a black mayor. He incorrectly assumed that in a small field, the machine candidate would either get more than 50 percent of the vote in the first round – and most certainly win a one-on-one contest.  He never foresaw the “big field” problem that enhanced the power of the black vote.

If Bill Daley had not fallen so painfully short of second place, he would have been the winner in the run-off and the next mayor of Chicago. He lost that opportunity by less than one-half of one percent of the vote – a mere 7,049 votes out of the 537,092 ballots cast.  One can only wonder how things are in the Daley family when Bill Daley realizes his own brother’s stupidity ended his ambition to be mayor.

At the national level, it now appears that the Democrats will have a field of presidential candidates that will have more candidates than the Chicago mayoral election – and even more than the 2016 Republican presidential primary.  That means the next Democrat standard bearer in the 2020 General Election could be the most extreme and least electable candidate.

The Democrat primary for President is more dangerous to the party, because, unlike Chicago, the nominated person will face a Republican in the General Election – presumably President Trump.  It will not be a run-off between Democrats.  If the field remains large and divided, that is the best news for the most extreme left-wing candidates such as Bernie Sanders, Elizabeth Warren and Kamala Harris.  On the other hand, there are so many far-left candidates, maybe they will divide up the radical left-wing vote.  We can only hope.

So, there ‘tis.

About Author

Larry Horist

Larry Horist

Larry Horist is a conservative activist with an extensive background in economics, public policy and politics. Clients of his consulting firm have included such conservative icons as Steve Forbes and Milton Friedman, as well as the White House. He has testified as an expert witness before legislative bodies, including the U. S. Congress, and lectured at major colleges and universities. An award-winning debater, his insightful and sometimes controversial commentaries appear frequently on the editorial pages of newspapers across the nation. He can be reached at lph@thomasandjoyce.com.

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3 Comments

  1. Allen
    Allen March 05, 19:17

    Ha, expecting any liberal, even one who is supposed to be smart, to be able to deep think an action is stupid on the part of one writing this article. Democrats suck. Here is hoping Howard Schultz runs also so that President Trump is a shoe-in. I love watching liberals head’s explode.

    Reply to this comment
    • Homegrown
      Homegrown March 06, 22:17

      There are about 12 committed Democrats and several others considering running ion 2020 already. The same scenario will hold true for them as well.

      Reply to this comment
  2. Jerry
    Jerry March 05, 21:06

    Sounds like the people of chicago got the best of the it.

    Reply to this comment

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