(CBS) – Is ousted Chicago Mayoral hopeful Willie Wilson a potential kingmaker?
As CBS 2 Chief Correspondent Jay Levine reported, the African-American businessman first met with Mayor Rahm Emanuel, who had called him and asked for his support. Then Wilson met with Emanuel’s runoff opponent, Cook County Commissioner Jesus “Chuy” Garcia.
On Thursday, there was a third meeting: this time, between Wilson and Ald. Bob Fioretti of the 2nd Ward, who also failed to advance to the April 7 mayoral election.
Fioretti and Wilson are out of the race, but not without clout. They garnered a combined 20 percent of the vote.
Fioretti arrived first.
“I called him up, said we should talk,” the alderman told Levine.
Fioretti and his guest, Wilson, met at the fashionable Palm Restaurant in River East, known for its caricatures of good customers and celebrities gracing its walls. Wilson has long been a good customer. Now he’s a celebrity, too.
The pair settled into a prime booth chatting for more than an hour. The subject: endorsements. Fioretti’s battles with the Mayor would seem to make it academic.
“I have offered Rahm Emanuel many alternatives, none of which he ever followed,” Fioretti said.
Wilson was similarly inclined to oppose the mayor.
“My feelings are still the same … but I’m going to be open to the process,” he said.
Earlier Thursday, he met with religious leaders on the South Side.
The elephant in the room was this: the strange bedfellows Wilson’s supporters and Garcia’s would make. Wilson conceded there is a “big problem” between Latinos and blacks.
He said that wouldn’t stop him from necessarily throwing his support behind Garcia.
“Hell, I just don’t know,” Wilson said.