Tuesday, March 28, 2006

Black America finally learning to play hardball politics?

Politics: At least in Chicago, the whole vote for whatever Dem is on the ticket routine may be in trouble.

The Chicago City Council's black caucus met with state Sen. James Meeks on Monday and agreed to back Meeks' possible third-party gubernatorial bid unless Gov. Blagojevich commits as much as $4 billion during the next four years to African-American causes. "If the governor doesn't meet the needs of the African-American community, then we're not going to support his candidacy, and we're going to move forward with supporting Rev. Meeks," said Ald. Anthony Beale (9th). Beale was among about a dozen black City Council members who met with Meeks at a South Side restaurant to discuss the funding ultimatum to the governor and the Salem Baptist Church pastor's potential gubernatorial run this fall.
It sounds promising, its time to get yours!
Today marks the first day that Meeks (D-Chicago) could put nominating petitions on the street to gather the necessary 25,000 signatures required by late June to join Blagojevich and Republican Treasurer Judy Baar Topinka on the Nov. 7 ballot. There were no signs that effort materialized as of Monday night. Meeks did not return calls left at his Chicago answering service or Springfield legislative office. Mayor Daley, meanwhile, weighed in on the potentially devastating threat Meeks poses to Blagojevich. When asked if Meeks had the ability to torpedo Blagojevich and perhaps the rest of the Democratic ticket in the fall, the mayor said, "Sure. Sure, that's happened before. That's a reality." In 1986, two supporters of political extremist Lyndon LaRouche scored stunning upsets for lieutenant governor and secretary of state in the statewide Democratic primary, wrecking the Democrats' efforts to unseat Republican Gov. James R. Thompson. Ald. Beale said he expects Blagojevich to deliver on the $1 billion-a-year funding commitment for schools, job training, help for released prisoners and building needs by May 31, or the wheels will be set in motion to get Meeks and a slate of third-party candidates on the fall ballot.
Now unless I start seeing petitions flying about, empty threats like this will only further hurt black voters in trying to establish them as a voting block that matters. The whole 90+% voting Dem has lead them to take the vote for granted.

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