Nephew of Richard M. Daley talks bid for Alderman seat

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Patrick Daley Thomsponis talking about his bid for 11th Ward Alderman and his merits as a candidate apart from his family legacy. (WLS)

Patrick Daley Thompson, nephew of former mayor Richard M. Daley, is talking about his bid for Alderman. Thompson hopes to take over the 11th ward seat being vacated by Alderman Jim Balcer. Alderman Balcer says he supports Thompson as his replacement.

Alderman Balcer plans to serve the remainder of his term, so Thompson would have to win the seat on his own next year in order to put another generation of Daleys in office at City Hall.

Patrick Daley Thompson lives on the same Bridgeport block he grew up on, in the same house once owned by his famous grandfather, the late Mayor Richard J. Daley.

The house is also where Thompson's uncle, former Mayor Richard M. Daley, grew up. So family tradition is a reason the Water Reclamation Commissioner wants in on city politics, throwing his famous middle name in the race for 11th Ward Alderman:

"I'm very proud I'm a Daley," says Thomspon, "but at the end of the day it's me as an individual who's going to be judged."

Another uncle is Cook County Commissioner John Daley, the ward's democratic committeeman with whom Thompson shares office.

Outgoing Alderman James Balcer's district office is in the same building with Thompson and Daley.

"I support Pat Thompson," said Balcer. "I will actively campaign with him. I will do what's necessary to see that he's elected Alderman of the 11th Ward."

The decorated Vietnam vet is retiring next year, he says because of recurring vertigo and combat-related post-traumatic stress disorder.

Mayor Rahm Emanuel, who talked to Balcer last night, dismissed the suggestion that the alderman's retirement is part of an 11th Ward political deal:

"I haven't seen him but I take him at his word because I've heard his voice," said Emanuel.

"If my name wasn't Daley, if I wasn't related, you'd look at me and say that person is really qualified," said Thompson of his decision to run.

An attorney and married father of three, the 45-year-old Thompson says he has no political ambition beyond serving the 11th Ward:

"And I want to do that job and I want to make sure that this is the best community in the city of Chicago," he said.

Another announced candidate in the 11th Ward aldermanic race is community activist and author Maureen Sullivan. She did not respond to our e-mails.

James Balcer is also chairman of the City Council Public Safety Committee that oversees the police and fire departments.

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politicselectionChicago - Bridgeport
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