Ward Room
Covering Chicago's nine political influencers

Opinion: Rahm's Got a Problem and He Knows It

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    NEWSLETTERS

    NBCChicago.com

    "Good Job, Mr. Emanuel. Yeah Right," reads a comment on the NBCChicago Facebook page.

    The comment comes in response to a post by our editors on Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel's statement on the mass shooting Thursday night in McKinley Park.  Emanuel, who was in D.C. for meetings and later had plans to stump for Senate candidate Corey Booker, cut his trip short and high-tailed it back to Chicago. 

    He has no choice: Emanuel owns the violence problem in Chicago. 

    If he weren't concerned about the political implications of the bulging gang violence portfolio in Chicago, Emanuel might not have responded to this tragedy until he finished his trip.  But after more than a year of headlines about gang violence and shootings in the city by the lake -- Hadiya Pendleton and 6-month-old Jonylah Watkins providing perhaps the most notable examples -- Emanuel knows he's in hot water. 

    #OneTermRahm and #OneTermMayor have become hot hashtags on social media, and it's not because they're trendy at cocktail parties.  Emanuel has cultivated an image as anti-teachers, anti-union, and pro-elite. The voters in wards that are plagued by this violence turned out in big numbers for Emanuel in 2011. 

    Does he think they will again?

    If he did, he wouldn't be turing around his plane this morning.