Yesterday was an interesting day. First, the alderman actually responded to a constituent. Then she asked for volunteers for her reelection campaign.
She seems to have suddenly realized that she represents the community.
In the first instance, she responded to a direct question from a constituent about the construction project on Kedzie between Touhy and Pratt. It turns out to be improvements to Thillens Park (officially Park 538) by the Chicago Park District. It speaks volumes about Debra’s approach to transparency that it never occurred to her to advise Ward residents about the project beforehand. Maybe she didn’t know.
But then she still has not advised the wider community about the luxury townhouse and condo development to be built a block from the new library. She did hold a meeting with about a dozen property owners in the immediate vicinity of the new development, but apparently doesn’t think it’s anyone else’s business.
And her request for volunteers to help her get her nominating petitions signed? Since petitions can be signed anytime on Tuesday, it’s hard to believe her political machine won’t be out at the crack of dawn– if not promptly at midnight– getting the necessary 473 signatures she needs to get on the ballot. Frankly, all she has to do is visit Winston Towers to get twice that number.
It looks like her appeal for volunteers is a self-serving response to years of complaints that she’s out of touch with her constituents. Such complaints have also been strongly voiced by both of her announced challengers.
But I have to give the alderman credit. After 8 years in office, she has begun to recognize that she needs the community.
It’s also been long enough for us to recognize that we don’t need her.