CHICAGO (CBS) — Former President Bill Clinton and a who’s who of Illinois politics were on hand Monday morning as Mayor Rahm Emanuel was sworn in for a second term.
Clinton, former Mayor Richard M. Daley and at least two of his brothers, U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin, and Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle were among those on hand as Emanuel took the oath of office, along with City Clerk Susana Mendoza and City Treasurer Kurt Summers at the Chicago Theatre.
Clinton received a wild standing ovation as he entered the auditorium – the applause from the crowd even louder for the former president than for the mayor.
Clinton and Emanuel go way back. The mayor was a senior advisor for Clinton, and also worked for him when he was governor of Arkansas.
His wife and children at his side, Emanuel took the oath from Cook County Chief Judge Timothy Evans at about 11:15 a.m.
The City Council also was sworn in, including 13 aldermen beginning their first terms.
At 26, Carlos Ramirez-Rosa, became the youngest member of the council, taking office as alderman of the 38th Ward.
He said a priority will be finding revenue to help the city solve a major financial crisis – approximately $2 billion in combined budget deficits at City Hall and the Chicago Public Schools, and a total of $30 billion in pension shortfalls at the city and schools.
“I join the mayor of the city of Chicago by asking the state legislature to act to free Chicago’s hands, and give us the power that we need in order to pass revenue; in order to create policies that lift the burden off working families, and ask the super-rich to pay their fair share,” he said.
Mendoza, a Emanuel ally, who co-chaired Emanuel’s re-election campaign acknowledged the mayor is facing major challenges as he begins his second term.
“We’ve got a lot of work to do. We’re not going to shy away from what these challenges are, and we’re just going to have to roll up our sleeves and get to work immediately,” Mendoza said.
After the inauguration ceremony, Emanuel and his wife were scheduled to host an open house at his fifth floor office at City Hall.