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Entire County Board slaps Ald. Beavers

Thursday, July 13, 2006
Chicago Sun-Times
by STEVE PATTERSON AND FRAN SPIELMAN

One by one, all 16 members of the Cook County Board on Wednesday took shots at Ald. William Beavers -- who plans to join them next January.
In an interview with the Sun-Times this week, Beavers made it sound as if he would waltz in as the new 4th District commissioner in January and become the "floor leader" he is with the city.
The 7th Ward alderman also said he was making the move so he wouldn't have to work as hard and to protect Ald. Todd Stroger (8th), whom he expects to be the next County Board president, from many of the recent attacks John Stroger endured as president.
The shots back at Beavers began with Commissioner John Daley, the mayor's brother, who was applauded by the board after beginning the onslaught, and continued until all had responded.
Commissioner Roberto Maldonado said Beavers "will be eaten alive" if he sloughs off, while Joseph Mario Moreno said Beavers will have "a grand awakening" in trying to help manage the county's $3 billion budget.
Refuses to apologize
"The TV series 'Leave it to Beaver' was canceled in the 1960s," Larry Suffredin said.
Daley said that though "there's been a lot of talk on the other side of the fifth floor," the board doesn't need anyone "telling us what to do."
Beavers said Wednesday he meant no disrespect with his comments, but he refused to apologize.
He said, "If I wanted to take over, I would have [run] for president," but he intends to join John Daley, who he said was the only commissioner who would stand by John Stroger in floor fights.
"They can be offended," he said. "But I'm coming over to help."
As defensive as each board member was in biting back at Beavers, each was eloquent in speeches honoring John Stroger.
Stroger, who suffered a stroke in March, is resigning as of July 31.
The board agreed to meet next Wednesday to decide on which member will fill Stroger's term from Aug. 1 through Dec. 4.
Much of the day's chatter was about Forrest Claypool -- who lost the March Democratic primary to Stroger -- as building a coalition of support for the interim job.
But neither Claypool, Bobbie Steele nor Carl Hansen -- the other two leading candidates -- appear to yet have the nine votes needed.
The vote will come a day after party committeemen select a replacement for Stroger on the November ballot -- expected to be his son, Todd Stroger, for president, and Beavers for his board seat.


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