Chicago mayor erupts during City Council meeting, calling alderman a ‘liar’
An epic outburst from Mayor Lori Lightfoot occurred Wednesday afternoon as the City Council debated her choice of Bally’s to build a big Chicago casino.
CHICAGO – An epic outburst from Mayor Lori Lightfoot occurred Wednesday afternoon as the City Council debated her choice of Bally’s to build a big Chicago casino.
The council approved it, but not before the mayor erupted at references to a new report on potential casino conflicts of interest.
Crain’s Chicago Business reports a law firm advising the city on the Bally’s deal is also being paid by Bally’s for legal work on other company operations.
Ald. Byron Sigcho-Lopez (25th Ward) noted how this mirrors the role played by union gaming, which provided revenue estimates the mayor’s relying on, while also collecting big bucks on a Bally’s stock deal.
“We have the responsibility to review this process, a sad process, and an administration that is more worried about campaign contributions than doing the right thing for the city of Chicago!” said Sigcho-Lopez.
“You are out of order! You are out of order, and you are a liar!” Lightfoot said. “I will not sit here, and I will not tolerate you besmirching the hard work of so many people!”
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Even some council members who voted for the proposals expressed misgivings in the wake of a Crain’s Chicago Business report on the hidden, dual role played by Taft law, a firm that advised Lightfoot during negotiations with Bally’s.
Neither the public nor the City Council were told Taft Law also works for Bally’s at its Quad Cities Casino and Hotel in downstate Rock Island.
soon Mary Hadden (49th Ward):
“I don’t like seeking articles the night before a meeting calling out conflicts of interest or potential ones that we should have known,” said Ald. Mary Hadden, 49th Ward.
Several more approvals are needed, including from the Illinois Gaming Board, before a planned temporary casino would open at 600 N. Wabash next year.