After hearing the news yesterday that Richard M. Daley will not run for a seventh term as Mayor of Chicago, I came across an old Hotline in which League Director Joe Scheidler wrote:
Would you believe that twenty years ago as a State Senator, Daley was pro-life? You could count on him to vote for a comprehensive anti-abortion bill. In fact he once flew back from visiting his little sick son, to assure us of an override vote. He supported our cause publicly. He argued with a gay rights group.
But when he became Mayor he sold out on the moral issues. Within a year he was calling for abortions at Cook County Hospital and riding in the gay pride parade. From a supporter of life and decency he became an enemy of both. Power went to his head and he became a big frog in the Chicago Pond. He got his way and made up his own rules, became intolerably arrogant and literally lost it.
That was written in 2003. Even then, most people had long since forgotten that at one time, Richard Daley had been pro-life.
But oh, how times change.
Daley Fails to Stop Chicago “Bubble Zone”
Fast forward 6 years to September 2009, when a “bubble zone” ordinance is introduced in the Chicago City Council. Daley could have cut it off at the knees, as he had actually done to a similar ordinance proposed many years before, merely by saying it wasn’t necessary.
Even after his office was flooded with so many calls from pro-lifers that his staff stopped answering them, he was unmoved.
Quite the contrary, in fact. When asked at a news conference about the bubble zone, he responded, “There has to be some civility left in our society.”
How ironic. The mission of sidewalk counselors is to prevent mothers from allowing their children to be killed — and, in the process, sparing them a lifetime of pain and regret — and we’re the ones who are uncivil?
After the Bubble Zone passed the City Council, Daley chose not to veto it, and it became law on November 17 — and as has been well documented here on the Hotline Blog, it’s been a nightmare ever since.
It’s pathetic to behold how a politician who at one time really did take his Catholic values seriously could, in such a relatively short time, flip-flop and sell out.