You think that's historic, and it all involves identity politics, but how about something even more fundamentally symbolic of change than skin pigment or sexual orientation:
A fed for mayor?
Lightfoot was triumphant Tuesday night.
But I remember a voice on the phone back in September. There were no trumpets in it. It was a small voice, anguish flowing along a broken reed, a voice angry and bone tired.
And just like that the campaign had flipped. The campaign of reform ideas versus a cynical pol who hid that
Lightfoot was being pushed to the margin of history. And she knew it.
"The media coverage disturbs me," Lightfoot told me back in September. "To see the media focused solely on the horse race and the powers that be anointing a winner without regard for citizens should be disturbing to everyone.
"This notion that city government and the mayor's office is pirate booty ripe for the picking is offensive," Lightfoot said.
Of course, it is offensive.
Preckwinkle had the buzz. She had the ground game with the public sector workers unions backing her.
Lightfoot had built her campaign to take the moral high ground and take Emanuel down. But when Emanuel pulled his own plug, the city was about to go tribal again and allow a post-Rahmulan to win.
But then came the brown butcher paper.
The FBI raided the offices of powerful
Burke was on an FBI wire courtesy of Alderman
And just like that Burke was served up in the
He was charged on a federal extortion count. Preckwinkle's relationship with Burke -- how he raised $116,000 for her, and how she gave Burke's son a $100,000-a-year Cook County job, became a regular feature of news coverage and commentary. Lightfoot, a former federal prosecutor, grabbed the opportunity.
The campaign flipped back again, to reform versus corruption and cynicism. That's when things began to change.
I preferred to stick with the meat metaphor I started with, but Lightfoot went all astronomical on me on my podcast "
"I think this Burke moment has really been a wake-up call for people," she said. "Strangers are stopping me on the street, telling me to keep making the case. This meteor that hit is really waking people up, and we're going to keep riding that lane."
The odd thing was that Preckwinkle really couldn't stand Burke when she was an alderman from
She became the
There will be much said about Lightfoot's victory. Many who ignored her in those difficult days after Emanuel pulled out, and those who jumped on the Lightfoot bandwagon late and wrote campaign checks, will now flatter her and give her advice.
Lori, I've got some advice too. You'll be mayor and everything will change. You'll be on the list of possible 2020 vice presidential candidates. Charmers will swoop in from
But you don't need new friends. This is
Good luck, Mayor Lightfoot.
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