Get sick, get well
Hang around a ink well
Ring bell, hard to tell
If anything is goin' to sell
-- Bob Dylan

Friday, February 8, 2013

Pritzker nomination causing problems for Obama

The Wall Street Journal reports that the nomination of Penny Pritzker as the next commerce secretary would threaten to divide President Barack Obama's political coalition, pitting women's advocates against labor leaders angry about the treatment of workers at her family's hotel chain.
Last July, a group of labor leaders, including Obama ally and AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka, joined Unite Here at a news conference in Washington, where Unite Here called for a global boycott of Hyatt Hotels.
How can you say you support women while supporting Pritzker too?
What WSJ misses, as do some women's groups (the National Organization of Women is part of the national coalition supporting UNITE and the Hyatt workers), is the fact that Pritzker's Hyatt Hotels are most oppressive to the hotel chain's largely female and immigrant workforce. Female immigrant workers are the backbone of the hotel industry. Not only that, Hyatt chain is a global company and labor opposition to the chain and disdain for the Pritzker name is also global. Her appointment could create even more widespread opposition to the pick than anticipated.

And let's not forget the thousands of women teachers who have to deal with Chicago's anti-teacher, corporate "reform" policies being pushed by Pritzker and the rest of Rahm Emanuel's hand-picked school board.

It's doubtful, says WSJ, that union opposition to the Pritzker pick will sink Obama's choice. More likely,  union leaders will try and use their influence on the selection of the new Labor Secretary who will be replacing the do-nothing Hilda Solis. The good news for Chicagoans is that a Pritzker pick will get her out of Chicago and off of the school board.

More UNO problems for Rahm

The Sun-Times recent expose of UNO's charter school profiteers has Rahm ducking for cover. If there's a major investigation of UNO corruption it's bound to implicate Rahm and his ties with UNO boss Juan Rangel. This becomes a major problem for Rahm especially because City Hall lawyers are currently hard at work trying to get Chicago out from under the Shakman Decree which strictly prohibits politically based hiring, firing, promotions, and other job actions. A perfect description of UNO's MO.

Fran Spielman writes in the Sun-Times:
Emanuel was clearly troubled by the Chicago Sun-Times disclosure that more than one-fifth of the $25 million in taxpayer money spent on the UNO Soccer Academy Elementary Charter School went to four contractors owned by family members of UNO’s political allies and a top executive of the group. The fact that Emanuel is a huge proponent of charter schools and that UNO CEO Juan Rangel is the mayor’s former campaign co-chairman and a mayoral appointee to the Emanuel-chaired Public Building Commission adds to the political embarrassment.
"Who'd we get today?"
Best Rahm quote:

It comes from John Kass' Trubune column on the Obama drone strategy:
"Who'd we get today?" was the famous question asked repeatedly by Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel, when he was the pro-drone Obama White House chief of staff, according to Bob Woodward's book "Obama's Wars."Emanuel's was a gleeful question, full of bureaucratic malice, asked by a man with his loafers on safe White House carpets. Those same carpets still caress Obama's shoes.

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