Solis should learn lessons from election
04/06/2011 10:00 PM
Richard M. Daley’s favorite alderman will live to see another mayor after all.
Appointed by Daley in 1996, Danny Solis was the mayor’s go-to man in the city council. Solis could be counted on to vote in lock-step with the mayor on anything from parking meters to big-box store living wages.
But Solis’ close call in this election seems to have forced the mayor’s immovable object to budge a little bit.
An ordinance Solis has stymied for years — the effort to clean up the Fisk Generation Plant in Pilsen — finally got some support, after Solis’ opponent, Cuahutemoc Morfin, made a big deal about it and got the community rallying behind it.
At his victory party Tuesday night, Solis denied that reacting to the community sentiment was anything but a good thing. That’s a fantastic thing to hear.
But we want to hear it when it’s not election season.
Solis said he wants to work with Mayor-elect Emanuel to improve the ward, just as he said he leveraged his goodwill with Mayor Daley to improve his neighborhoods.
What that means on a city council that’s sure to be fragmented as things sort themselves out is anybody’s guess. New factions will surely be forming soon, with veteran aldermen like Bernie Stone (50th) leaving.
It’s definitely important for the alderman to have a cordial relationship with the mayor — it’s necessary to get a lot of things done in the ward. But it would be nice to see Solis show some guff and support many of the causes that his constituents support.
Pilsen is becoming increasingly progressive, but Solis has abandoned that boat. Perhaps his close call with the progressive Morfin will convince him he needs to pay more attention to them.