* Mark Brown wasn’t impressed with Mayor Lori Lightfoot’s speech last night…
“Yes, some of our solutions will be hard.
Yes, they may involve putting ourselves at risk. And if it means that I sacrifice myself politically, so be it in pursuit of the right thing,” Lightfoot said.
Chicago could use a politician who says that and means it. So could the whole state of Illinois.
And when she shows she’s willing to make that sacrifice, I would like to be in her corner.
But for now, it was just a speech.
* Tribune editorial…
It’s Chicago’s curse that Lightfoot had to give this speech. Decade after decade, Chicago and Springfield politicians raised taxes and fees yet raised spending even more. Mayors, aldermen, governors, legislators — the people who caused the public finance debacles in Chicago and Illinois — weren’t at the microphone Thursday night. Just a newcomer who says the downward spiral stops now.
Sensibly, she said she wouldn’t follow the old playbook of “historically large tax increases,” or “a massive borrowing scheme,” or shortchanging payments into the city’s pension system.
Our immediate takeaway from her address: What’s significant here is a matter of degree — that looming deficit ― and a new mayor who’s willing to speak hard truths and own a big share of this mess. She’s decided she has no choice but to ask all of us to help her clean it up.
So, the Trib is for making the full pension payments now?