Wednesday, August 2, 2006

The Great Debate on Political Shootout Sunday: Big Box or Not?


With many awaiting a decision from Mayor Richard M. Daley on whether or not he will veto the City Council’s ordinance setting a special higher minimum wage for employees of big boxes including WalMart, Sunday will offer a memorable debate on WLS-AM (8 to 9 p.m.).

Participants will be Alderman Joe Moore (49th) one of the authors of the Big Box ordinance and Ron Gidwitz, an entrepreneur, economic expert and a former Republican candidate for governor of Illinois. This should be a very exciting debate that will probably take the entire hour on this single subject that is of such importance to Chicago.

Also don’t forget September 25 Noon at Maggiano’s when the City Club of Chicago (for whom this Blog serves as chairman) hosts the first official debate for president of the Cook county Board between Todd Stroger, the Democratic party nominee and Tony Peraica, the Republican candidate. Moderator will be the ever-popular, witty Dr. Paul Green of Roosevelt University who brings academic luster to the debates he referees.


  1. A hidden cost of the Big Box Bill is the enormous legal cost to defend this bill on Constitutional grounds. This may cost jobs or create jobs, but the city will spend millions on lawyers to defend the boondoggle.

  2. Dances with Wolves in Chicago

    Dear Mr. Roeser:

    This vote was a charade of cynicism and self-interest. Emma Mitts, alderman for the 37th Ward, in a rare moment of candor in Chicago’s city council admitted “We all know that this ordinance is unconstitutional,” and asked “Why would we go through all of that when we can be bringing in jobs?”

    Simple. The veto-proof margin let a politically weak mayor off the hook from having to take a controversial stance, and the aldermen who supported the ordinance keep their union contacts cozy. Meanwhile the high unemployment among inner-city black males will continue unabated.

    So Chicago alderman appease the unions, allow the mayor to save face, and wait on trial lawyers to deliver what will be a victory for Wal-Mart through the courts, safely after the Spring 2007 elections. It’s all really very clear.


    Ralph Conner

    Ralph W. Conner is government relations manager for Chicago-based Heartland Institute and former mayor of Maywood, Illinois.

  3. Patrick McDonoughAugust 2, 2006 at 5:07 PM

    I am very proud of Alderman Joe Moore making an independent committment to issues not decided behind closed doors. The days of Mayor "Mob Boss" Daley are numbered. I hope Alderman Moore might think about reducing the amout of Chicago Alderman. I would work hard to have Alderman Moore take over the 48th Ward to reduce the amount of Chicago Alderman. I cannot wait for the show. Patrick McDonough.

  4. So Pat McDonough thinks we should be proud of Joe Moore for working against Mayor Daley? Does McDonough also think that working against the vast majority of consumers in the City of Chicago that just want to shop for low prices should be applauded? Perhaps McDonough should go shopping around Pulaski and Madison sometime and see all the fine retail establishments in this once bustling corridor.

    Ald Moore, yes the same guy with the questionable relationship with Bob Creamer, is the problem here, not Mayor Daley, or WalMart, or the tens of thousands of workers who would just like to get on with making some money, rather than screeching for a living wage.


  5. Tom,

    As I do every Sunday, I listened to your excellent show with Moore and Gidwitz. One basic point in that very short hour was missed.

    What is the role of Government?

    I hope you address that question in your blog.

    Thank you in advance!

    T. R.