He’s winning in the white community and the black community, but, according to the most recent Tribune poll, Chico is beating him in the Latino community, 38 to 34 percent. Latinos are a challenge for Emanuel. He’s running against two Latino candidates, and he’s been accused of blocking immigration reform as White House Chief of Staff.
Now, though, Emanuel thinks he’s found his wedge issue: Chico’s endorsement by the anti-immigrant Chicago Tea Party. Here’s the English translation of a robo-call that’s been going out to households in Latino neighborhoods:
“Gery Chico finished getting the support of the anti-immigrant party The Chicago Tea Party. This right-wing group fights against President Barack Obama's agenda and supports the Arizona law against immigrants.... The Chicago Tea Party is against amnesty and supports measures that would separate thousands of families.
Please consider Rahm Emanuel for Mayor of Chicago. Rahm Emanuel has always been with President Barack Obama and strongly supports immigration reform. He also supports the Chicago DREAM ACT to give more and better access to education opportunities for immigrants”
The Chico campaign is responding with its own negative ad, starring Rep. Luis Gutierrez. In the ad, Gutierrez says that “when Rahm Emanuel could have used his power to help us, he turned his back to us and our most vulnerable families.” Here’s the English translation, followed by the ad:
“On Tuesday, I need your help. This election is important, but simple. Gery Chico has fought by my side for our community. When Rahm Emanuel could have used his power to help us, he turned his back to us and our most vulnerable families. Let’s make history together. Gery Chico will never stop fighting for our families. Vote for our community -- vote for Gery Chico.”
UPDATE: This blog post from the Chicago Tea Party Patriots website, entitled "Chico Is Not The Man," insists the organization did NOT endorse Chico:
Contrary to what has been reported by the Huffington Post and repeated by other media outlets, the Chicago Tea Party Patriots have not endorsed Gery Chico. Here is what we said about Gery Chico in our Chicago Mayoral Candidate Profile:
“For generations Chicago voters have had their choice of voting for various somebodys that somebody sent. This election for Chicago Mayor is no different, sadly. Unfortunately, Chico does not offer a break from the Chicago Way of politics and progressive policies. Chico is not the man.”
We also said Chico's relationship with the public sector unions will lead to the largest tax increases in Chicago history. Read our full analysis of Gery Chico on the issues here.
Our members are very disappointed in the choices we have for Mayor, particularly Gery Chico and Rahm Emanuel. The City of Chicago current has $60 billion in unfunded pension liabilities, which comes to $42,000 per family. None of the candidates have a plan to address the most serious financial crisis the city is facing.