Not quite. He was elected The Chicago Way. But he is governing the Chicago Lakefront Liberal Way.
By doing so, he has answered the question that many Chicagoans never wanted to contemplate: What would it be like if a lakefront liberal ran Chicago, or, heaven forbid, the country? The results are in, and the answer is: terrifying.
Lakefront liberals never have run much of anything in Chicago, their piety and trendiness not quite right in a city of bungalows and two-flats. Lakefront liberals areDemocrats of the salon, not of the saloon.
They're driven by impractical and utopian ideals. They were the few and the proud who in the 1960s and '70s fruitlessly charged the ramparts ofMayor Richard J. Daleyand the Chicago Machine. Daley and the rest of 'em barely noticed the minor commotion outside the palace gates while they feasted within on the bounty of practical politics.
Younger Chicagoans may not be that familiar with how pejorative the term "lakefront liberal" (or lakeshore liberal or limousine liberal) once was. Today, lakefront liberals have successfully rebranded themselves as "progressives" — as if the only people who are for progress are the apostles of big government, big deficits and big panaceas.