Mayor Daley held a press conference with reporters following the grand opening. Here’s an excerpt of the Q&A.
Concerning how long the mayor will take in naming a replacement for former 29th Ward Alderman Isaac Carothers: “Well, about a couple of more weeks; we are interviewing a lot of people. There are about 12 or 14 already applied, so we interview them and make a decision.”
Regarding whether seniors should continue their free rides on CTA buses: “Like anything else you have seniors who are struggling. It’s nice to do, but how do people pay for it? Seniors who are struggling? Yes, they need help. But those who are not struggling have to be part of the solution and not part of the problem. In the long run you just can’t do things like that.”
In response to Desiree Rogers leaving her post as social secretary for the Obama administration: “Desiree is a great friend of my mine; she did a tremendous job. She took that position; she didn’t have to take it. Remember, there’s only one group responsible for the security of the White House and presidency – that is the Secret Service. So let’s stop blaming her for anybody walking in there because no one can stop anyone except the Secret Service.”
Responding to CTA bus drivers possibly striking: “I don’t know what the legal obligation is. We sat down with them and they told me very frankly and honesty that their membership voted against a furlough. They said that was unacceptable to them. We had nothing to do with it; that was a union vote, saying that they take eight days off. So it has nothing to do with us. It was the union’s belief that they’d rather have a thousand laid off.”