WRPCO Candidates’ Forum

Not surprisingly, the alderman was the only no-show at last night’s Candidates’ Forum sponsored by the West Rogers Park Community Organization (WRPCO). The other four candidates and a lively audience showed up despite the freezing temperatures.

Silverstein was represented by a letter stating that she would not be attending because (a) WRPCO Chair Ahmed Khan personally endorsed Shajan Kuriakose, and (b) write-in candidates Fuji Shioura and Peter Sifnotis were present. Khan was acting as a private citizen and not as WRPCO chair but the alderman seized on the opportunity to avoid the event. She apparently considers it beneath her aldermanic dignity to associate with mere write-in candidates.  Her behavior is another reason not to re-elect her.

The first part of the forum was devoted to questions prepared by WRPCO, and the second part to written questions from the audience. Many of the questions were long-winded, with rambling preambles and multi-part questions that were at times difficult to understand. Each candidate was blindsided at least once by questions like this, but all of them did their best to provide a credible answer.

I was impressed by all four candidates. Each gave thoughtful, reasoned answers. There were no personal attacks, a tribute to both the candidates’ integrity and their focus on community and citywide issues rather than personalities or other disagreements. None attacked Debra, an opportunity I must admit I would have taken. Instead, they let her absence speak for itself.

They are all class acts. Zehra, Shajan, Fuji, and Peter, thank you for a lively, informative evening.

2 thoughts on “WRPCO Candidates’ Forum

  1. First off, you are doing an incredible job with these postings and want to thank you for the work you’re putting in. Talk about volunteering!

    Now onto this hack politician – according to chicagosalaries.com (http://www.chicagosalaries.com/salary_profile/debra-l-silverstein1045) this utter disgrace of an Alderwoman “earns” a yearly salary of $114,996 and doesn’t show?!?!? One would think that if her accomplishments are as grandiose as she touts them to be why not show up, not only to defend them but take credit for them? If I accomplished something that I worked hard for and was proud of and I was in the midst of a hotly contested race, I’d want everyone to know about it. I would intend on taking full or even partial credit for my role if what I believed were great things I accomplished – especially during my first and only term. I wouldn’t want any challenger stealing my thunder!

    That she couldn’t even take a few hours of her time to explain what we all must not understand about her accomplishments along with her future visions for the ward and why she is the best option for a second term is all the more reason why I will NOT be voting for her, nor do I think she will be re-elected. The fact that she “earns” $114,996 and doesn’t feel she needs to answer to the people of this ward and their concerns says all anyone needs to know about what kind of person she is. And to use some petty excuse to explain her absence – how ridiculously childish. I take that back, children have more guts!

    Earlier today she had a facebook posting about today’s CPS closings and someone asked her why she did not attend the debate last night – her response was to call her office. Classic Deb. That same individual then posted another question asking about why she is taking PAC money from Rahm with a link to the story. A few hours later those questions were removed. Who does she think she’s fooling?

    I would even go so far as to say this blog you started has done an irreparable amount of harm to her campaign. It opened up the eyes, ears and voices of what many have been thinking just not conversing about in such a public way. The more this dirty laundry of hers gets out the more difficult it becomes to clean up, especially in a public realm. Who knows, it may have even contributed to why she did not attend last night’s debate. Kudos to you!


  2. Thank you! I agree with you completely that her excuse for not appearing is baloney. She’s been trying with all her might to create a record of accomplishment out of thin air. Here’s what I find especially galling: If you go to Zehra Quadri’s Web site and download her economic plan, you’ll find a link to a report written in 2007 by SAAPRI (South Asian American Policy & Research Institute). It thanks Ira Silverstein for his dedication to the 50th Ward and for assistance rendered to the research team. Conditions described in the report are even worse now. So, if Ira was involved with this, why didn’t Deb read it and act on it? These two have been terrible for the ward. We have to defeat both of them to get this ward moving again.


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