CHICAGO (CBS) – The Chick-Fil-A controversy was served up during a lunch at Chicago City Hall Friday, and at least one alderman may have gotten a case of political indigestion.
Ald. Brendan Reilly arranged lunch for his colleagues during budget hearings and had dozens of Chick-Fil-A chicken sandwiches brought in. The guest of honor was supposed to be Ald. Proco “Joe” Moreno, who earlier this year tried to block a Chick-Fil-A from coming to his 1st Ward because of a corporate leader’s aversion to gay marriage.
“I hope Alderman Moreno will join me for our lunch break during today’s budget hearings for a special treat!” Reilly, who has a Chick-Fil-A in his downtown ward, said in a Tweet earlier Friday.
Moreno did not attend the catered lunch, which was scarfed down within minutes by hungry city officials. Reilly tells CBS 2 it was all just a good-natured ribbing for a colleague he respects.
“We were honestly just trying to bring a little levity to City Hall –- and to remind (Moreno) that while the chain’s corporate leadership might have some distasteful views, the local franchise owners, at least here in Chicago, are really good people who don’t discriminate against anyone,” Reilly said.
Ald. Moreno wasn’t amused.
“Thanks Alderman Reilly, but since I am vegetarian and I don’t think homophobia is funny, I’ll have to reject your gift,” he said in a statement.
Moreno’s clash with Chick-Fil-A over the gay marriage issue generated nationwide attention.
In the wake of the debate over Chick-Fil-A and gay marriage, supporters of the restaurant chain turned out in drove on Aug. 1 for an “Appreciation Day” sponsored by former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee, while two days later, same-sex couples and their supporters descended on Chick-Fil-A locations in Chicago and elsewhere for a “kiss-in.”