Early Edition (1996–2000): Season 2, Episode 13 - Walk, Don't Run - full transcript

Gary is asked to fill in a vacant City Council seat and he tries to get a traffic light installed in an area where a lot of street accidents occur. But he's told that first he has to vote with them on a project that Gary learns will displace a lot of people. So Gary decides not to vote with them and they decide not to back Gary's project. He eventually gets help from Molly Greene and a former and honest Council member.

(loud snarling)

So wasn't
the zoo fun, kids?

Okay, to finish off
our field trip,

we're going to take
a very special guided tour

through the botanical gardens,

so let's stay in one line,
keep together in a group.


We have a very special guided
tour of the botanical gardens,

so let's just see how
many of the exotic birds

we can spot

Oh, look at what beautiful
orchids they have here.

(birds chirping)

That's it... stay
together in one line...

(horn honking)

(Gary panting)

(birds squawking)


(alligator roaring)
(girl screaming)

Priscilla, run!


Here, here, eat that,
go on, go on.

(Priscilla screams)

Oh, my God.


You all right?



(theme music playing)

CHUCK: What if you
knew, beyond a doubt,

what was going
to happen tomorrow?

What would you do?

There's no easy answer

for a guy
who gets tomorrow's news today.

NEWSCASTER: ...the girl,
eight-year-old Priscilla Applegate

of Highland Park, was unhurt.

Her teacher said she managed
to wander from the group

in spite of supervision

by teachers
and accompanying parents.

It was one of those parents...

Tune in to next
week's Wild Kingdom,

as Gary Hobson faces...

Irritated squirrels.

So how does it feel
to be a hero?

Well, I was, uh,
just here at the right time,

right place kind of,
kind of thing.

How did you happen
to have chicken fingers

on you?

It was lunchtime.

What were you doing
at the zoo anyway?

What do you...
I wanted to get away.

Is that all right?

What, from the stress
from hanging out in a bar?

Hey, maybe he likes the zoo.

At least the animals
don't talk back.

Here's a look
at that amazing home video

that was shot today at the
Memorial Park Botanical Gardens,

where a young girl nearly became
a meal for a hungry alligator.

It's on again.

...the gator with his lunch

in time to carry the girl
to safety.

So how does it feel
to be a hero?

Check this kid out.

It was nothing, really.

It was just the right time,
right place kind of thing.

He's good.

And guess what?
He's from Callahan's district.


Yeah, I know him.

He took over McGinty's place
for a while.

What do you think, Dutch?
Appoint him supervisor

to finish out

Callahan's term?

I mean, we're only talking
three months here, right?

What do we know about him?

He looks good on TV.

That's more than I can
say about Callahan.


I thought you were going
to appoint Declan.

No, the press
is watching this closely.

Callahan's indictment caused
too much of a stink.

I mean, we could live
with the bribery charges,

but those weekends at Lake
Geneva with the judge's wife?

Whoever takes over
to finish out his term needs

to be squeaky clean.

Did the zoo reimburse you
for lunch?

GARY: Uh, well,
no, I, I...

I think we just found
Callahan's replacement.

It's very simple.

If a supervisor resigns
or retires early...

Or is, uh, removed

for running off
with the judge's wife.

...someone is appointed
to finish his term.

Why me?

Well, you're a hero.

The whole city saw you on TV.

Look, what, are you nuts?

I don't know anything
about politics.

What's to know?

You kiss
a few babies,

you hire your friends.

Excuse me.

I didn't know beans
when I was appointed,

and I've been in office
four terms now.

Look, we're talking
three months here.

If you don't like it,

you don't have to run
for reelection.

Oh, come on, Gare, take it.

Why don't you take it?

Can I?


Look, guys, thank
you very much,

but me and politics, we
don't get along too well.

Thank you.

(whispering): Hey,
Gary, are you crazy?

This is the best thing the
newspaper's ever done for us.

GARY: "A seven-year-old girl
was struck dead by a truck

"late yesterday afternoon as
she was crossing

"the intersection of Emerson
and Wingate Avenues.

"It was the second fatality

"at this intersection
in the past year.

"The victim, Graciela Abdogo,

"was struck down
at the intersection

"by a cement truck from the
Coveleski Construction Company.

There is no stop sign or light at
this intersection."
(horn honking)

I got to go.

ho... Ga...

He's, uh, he's just
playing hard to get.

Come on, man, I'm open.

Pass the ball.

Come on, let's go.

Oh, no,
my homework.

Hold hands.

Here you go.


Look out, a truck.

Hurry, Graciela.

Get up!

No, Graciela!
(horn honking)

(horn honking)


You scared me
to death.

I'm okay, Mama.

Oh, thank God.

And thank you.

You saved my daughter's life.

Well, I was just, uh...
I was lucky.

I was in the right place
at the right time.

This corner is so dangerous.

You see that?

Little Bobby Ortega got hit
by a car here last year.

And he was my best friend.

We petitioned
Supervisor Callahan for a light,

but he didn't lift a finger.


Well, uh, Callahan's out,
so maybe the,

the next supervisor'll get you
a, a new light.


You don't know much
about local politics,

do you?

Coveleski Construction uses
this street

to get its cement trucks
to the highway.

Time is money,

Yeah, I guess so.

We'll never get
that light.

(horn honking)

And as supervisor,

I will abide by the codes,
bylaws, and statutes

of the precinct,
the ward, and the city.

And as supervisor,

I will abide by the codes,
the bylaws, and the statutes

of the precinct, the
ward, and the city.

and welcome to the club.

(indistinct chatter)


Molly Greene,
Sun Times.

Mind if I ask you
a few questions?

Come on, Molly, give him
a chance to get his feet wet.

Oh, Molly Greene.
Uh... Gary Hobson.

I know.

No, I mean, I
know you know.

I-I read your column,
though; it's very good.

Oh, wow,
he can read.

That's an improvement
over Callahan.

All right, one question.

Supervisor Hobson,
what would you say is

your strongest qualification
for holding office?

Oh, well...
Other than gator monitor.

That's it. Because,
I mean, that would

really qualify you for more a
congressman or a senator's job,

wouldn't you say?

No, Miss Greene, I-I'll tell
you why I took this job.

It's an opportunity
to do some good.


Come on, I got some folks
I want you to meet.

One of Maguire's boys?

He don't know it.

Should be interesting.


Okay, so all I got to do is,

I got to get that signed
and then I

get the ball rolling, right?

Yeah, then it goes to
the supervising council,

then the engineering

and then you submit it for
a traffic board hearing.

Okay, easy enough.

You must be new to this.

(horn honking)


I got a 20-man crew on the clock

who are doing
absolutely nothing

because a certain
civil engineer

hasn't made
his inspection yet.

I'm making an on-
the-site inspection

for Mr. Hobson here.

Yeah, get in the car.
You're costing me money.

You're the boss,
Mr. Coveleski.

Yeah, that's right,
I'm the boss.

Come on.

Thank you.

Hey, aren't you going
to fill out the rest of this?

Hey, if he signed it,
he signed it, all right?

Wait a second,
I need him to fill this out...

And just who are you
supposed to be, huh?

Well, I'll tell you. I'm Gary Hobson;
I happen to be the new supervisor.

How do you do?

Oh, yeah.

Stan Coveleski.


Coveleski Construction?

That's me, son.

If you want something built,
you come see Stan.

Yeah, so these are your, uh,
your cement trucks

come barreling
up and down through here?


biggest fleet in the city.

Yeah, well, lemme, lemme...

Hey, no time to gab.

My number one rule is:
get things done.

And son, if I'm talking to you,
I'm not getting things done.

Well, your trucks that
come barreling down...

(truck starts)

(tires screeching)

MAN: Contractors built dwellings
at the specified 70-foot allotment

from the curb, but...

when the precinct
split in 1954, however,

the new houses
were not built

according to the old code.

It's my feeling that the old
code is actually preferable...

Supervisor Johannsen, in
light of the late hour,

I move we postpone
further discussion of, uh,

whatever your topic is
to a subsequent meeting.


Call the question.

All in favor
of the chair proposal?


Move that this meeting be
adjourned, please.

MAGUIRE: Seconded.
Call the question.

All in favor
of adjournment?

Uh, new business.

There is a motion
on the floor.

GARY: Yes, I know,
but you didn't mention

anything about new business.

It's late.

Well, you see, I have cons...
uh, constituents who...

they really need
a traffic light.

I thought if we could pass it
real quick...

I-I've got the
on-site inspection right here.


that's only the tip

of a very large
procedural iceberg,

and we don't want to
hold up everyone else

while I explain it.

In favor
of adjournment?


Motion carries.

(gavel bangs)
We stand adjourned.

W-Whoa, Parliamentary procedure

This isn't Parliament, Gary,
it's Chicago.

Well, yeah, I know that, but...

Freshman supervisors don't
make proposals, okay?

It upsets the
balance of things.

You with me here?
GARY: Well, I'm not

trying to upset anything.

Rookie mistake...
no harm, no foul.

In the future, you want to
put something on the agenda,

come to me first.

Well, I want a traffic light
at Wingate and Emerson.


Look, we don't hand out
traffic lights like lollipops.

We've got a very limited
budget for that kind of thing.

Plus, I happen to
know for a fact

that keeping those particular
streets open is very important

to the welfare
of the city.

You mean
Coveleski Construction.

Stan Coveleski's

an outstanding
citizen of Chicago

and a highly valued
supporter of this party,

which... let me remind
you, Supervisor Hobson...

has put you into
political office.

You want to make
a difference?

Learn the game, kid.

Keep your eyes open
and your mouth shut.

You with me here?

Good, good.

And relax,
will you?

You're part of
the team now.

You're going to
be taken care of.

Why didn't you bring up
the Hamilton Place project?

Not the right time.
Not yet.

Yeah, well, it
better be soon.

I got people
to put to work.


MOLLY: You don't look
too good, sport.

Maybe you should have thrown
'em some chicken fingers.

Chicken fingers get me
a traffic light?


Don't write that down.
That was off the record.

Oh, you got to say that before
you make a statement, kiddo.

That's the rule.

If you don't want to see it in
print, it's off the record.

If it can be quoted, but not
attributed, it's on background.


Oh, boy, you really did

just fall off
a turnip truck, didn't you?

Okay, pay attention, sport.

You're not here
to put up a traffic light.

You're here because
you look good on television.

And after Callahan's ugly mug,

that's enough for
Maguire's outfit.

You're not supposed
to do anything.

You're just supposed
to look pretty

and sit there
and warm that chair

for the next three months
till the coming election.

Maguire decides
what's supposed

to get done around
here, not you.

In this great big machine,
my friend, you are but a cog.

A very little cog.

Chicago Politics 101.

(alarm beeping)
(train rumbling in distance)

(turns alarm off)

(cat meows)

(paper thuds against door)

(cat purrs)



Hey, you got to see this!

I love ya, man.


They approved my application
for parking in the alley.

No more driving around
20 minutes looking for a spot.

No more banged-up fenders.

No more parking tickets.

And look, look.

It's a Dumpster.

An empty Dumpster.

They've doubled
our trash pickup.

You are the man!

I'm telling you, Gare,
it keeps rolling in.

What does?

Only a variance allowing
us to run the new exhaust

fan through the wall,
instead of up through the roof.

You know how much money
that saves us, Gare?

I think I finally
have the answer.

What was the question?

As to why you get
the newspaper every day.

Yeah, it suddenly became

so clear to me.

You get it so that you
could go into politics,

so that you could help
more people at once.

I haven't helped anybody yet.

Sure, you have. You helped me.
You helped us.

And that's-that's only
the beginning, Gare.

It's not out
of the question

that once Daley
decides to hang it up,

with my managerial skills, you
could be the city's next mayor.

And then, you could even
go someplace higher.

Look, according to this,
I'm in over my head already.

Says who?
Says who?

I'll show you says who.

There. Says Molly Greene.

CHUCK: "Gator boy
lost in swamp."


Well, at least she
got your name right.

Thanks, Chuck.

Publicity, Gare... that's
the name of the game.


Let me tell
you something.

It doesn't matter what
she says about you,

as long as people know
who you are.

(loud, overlapping chatter)

(chatter and phones ringing)

MOLLY: What's the
alderman's position?

Look, you tell him
he's got 24 hours to call me,

or I go to print
with what I've got.

What can I do for you,
Supervisor Hobson?

It's Gary, and I
want to talk to you

about the article you're writing
about me, off the record.

Who says I'm writing
an article about you?

Okay, let's say I am.

You know, you have a good time
making fun of people, don't you?

What makes you think
I'd make fun of you?

Oh, I have a feeling
that's what you like to do.

Oh, look, you guys just run
the circus, I review the acts.

Oh, yeah. Well, maybe
you've been reviewing it

a little too long, lady.

Look, all I'm trying to do

is help some people here,
that's it.

How sweet.

Why have you got it in for me?

Because you're in
Maguire's pocket.

What are you talking about?
I'm not in anybody's pocket.

Oh, no? How's that bar
of yours doing lately?

Got any problems
with health inspectors?

Any trouble getting
your trash picked up? No?

I didn't think so.
Now, wait a second.

I didn't ask for
any of that...

Look, all I want is
a stoplight, that's it.

In-In three months, I resign.

Please, don't go getting
self-righteous on me, sport.

It spoils your boyish charm.

Besides, Maguire won't
let you resign.

You're too media-friendly.

GARY: Now, last week a girl
stumbled upon an escaped alligator

here, and she was almost killed.

But the fact is,
she was probably safer here

than she would have been
crossing a street in the city,

especially when
the street has no stoplight,

and especially when there's
a 40-ton truck flying at her.

What is with this guy
and his traffic light?

(Gary speaking on TV)
Doesn't he get it?

Maybe he's
just dense.

We're taking care
of his bar, right?

The whole
nine yards.

Why did that happen?

Dutch, you see this kid?

What am... What am I gonna do
with this kid?

The dog is hungry.

Throw him a bone.

Throw him a bone? What do you
mean, give him the light?



Why not?

Just make sure
it's attached to something.

Like Coveleski's project?

You're the supervisor.

I'm just here
for the entertainment.

I think everyone would agree

that you can't put a price
on life,

but I'd say it's at least worth
the price of a stoplight.

GARY: You see, it's just that
I feel a little uncomfortable

with these
favors. I-I...

It's expected, Gary.

You want to use power?

You got to show people
you have power.

Well, yeah.

I've been giving it
a lot of thought,

and I'm gonna put
your traffic light on the agenda

for the next meeting.

Top priority.

You are?

All it needs is
a simple majority to pass.

Just like that?

Just like that.

Well... good.

Good. Thank you,
Mr. Maguire.

I appreciate
that. I think...

Now, the first item on

the agenda will be the new city
office building contract.

We're gonna award that
to Stan Coveleski.

So you go ahead
and vote for that,

and then
we'll get you your light.

The, uh... the new city
office building?

Which would be Hamilton Place.

I know what you've heard.

It's gonna tear the heart out

of the old Greek neighborhood
down there.


Yeah, well...

Hamilton Place
only takes up

a half a block of Greek Town.

Look, they're gonna get
a nice buyout.

The rest of the neighborhood
gets the benefit

of a major new revenue producer.


I know better
than to push you

for a commitment right now.

Think about it.

Take your time.

But I tell you,
when you look at it,

it's a win-win.


Did you get it?

(Gary sighs)

MAN #2:
Not yet.

Would you
quit pacing?

It'll all
work out.

Look, these impact statements...

they build this city office
building at Hamilton Place,

they're gonna destroy one of the
oldest neighborhoods in Chicago.

And it'll bring more commuters
from the suburbs,

and then you get
your traffic light.

Quid pro quo.
One hand

washes the other.

You scratch my back...

Yeah, yeah, I got it. I got it.

So vote for it.

You're so
negative lately.

Why can't you see the glass
is half full, like me, huh?

(indistinct shouting)

(vehicle approaches)


Mr. Maguire, it's Gary Hobson.

What's up?

I, uh... I've thought about it.

You got a deal.

That's great.

Get some sleep, kid.


(cat meowing)

(cat purring)

"Hobson makes his choice.

"Supervisor Gary Hobson,
who fell off a turnip truck

"into the local
political machine,

"was the deciding vote
last night

"in the acquisition of a choice
slab of political pork.

(cat purring)

"...new city office complex,
which would displace one

of the city's
great neighborhoods..."

(indistinct chatter)

"Residents will be reimbursed,
but this isn't about money,

"it's about a way of life.

"It's about community.

"When Hamilton Place is gone,

"or any of the neighborhoods
like it are bought out,

redevelop or simply

"...then part of this city's
soul disappears as well."

(cat meows)

(indistinct chatter)

(entrance bell chimes)

I got it.
What are you doing?

Oh, excuse me.

Excuse me.

Thank you.

Nice to meet you.

Call the question.

The vote is
on the Hamilton Place

buyout package
and redevelopment

by Coveleski Construction.

All in favor?

Motion pa...

clears throat)

Let the record show
five votes for the motion.

All opposed?

Five votes opposed.

There is no
majority vote.

Motion is defeated.

Well, I see nothing else
on the agenda.

Move to adjourn.

Now, wait a minute.

What about the stoplight?

Call the question.

In favor?

Aye. Aye. Aye.


We are adjourned.

(gavel bangs)

Hey! That's a hell
of a way to start your

political career... cut off
the hand that feeds you.

I don't want
a political career.

All I want is
a stoplight.

Yeah, well, now you
got neither, right?

Hey, listen, you've
got to start listening

to what I'm telling you.

Give us a minute,
will you?


What the hell was that, Hobson?

We had a deal.

Well, I, I changed my mind.

I don't know what your game is.

Either you're very clever
or just plain stupid.

I don't care.

You've got one more chance.

Either you vote for that
new office building,

or you're going to find
the world of politics

can be a very lonely place.

GARY: I'm not quite
sure I understand.

It says right here

you could have gotten
the light if you'd voted

for the Hamilton Place

Well, probably, but you see...
But what?

How many more kids have to die
before we get our light?

Now, wait, I'm going to get
the stoplight.

It's just...
What are you doing?

Holding out for a better deal?

No, I'm not holding out.

I thought you were different,
but you're not.

You got any idea
how many people

and plans you
screwed up yesterday?

What's the problem?

You were going
to get your stoplight.

Not enough in it for you?

Wait a second... I'm not going
to vote for anything

unless I have a reason
to vote for it.



(envelope thuds)

With more to follow
after the next vote.

Nice talking to you, kid.

(indistinct chatter)

What's that?

That's a returned favor.

You know, I'll tell you

I took this job to get
some people a stoplight.

And any way I got to do it,

I'm going
to get that stoplight.

Mr. Hobson just
became a liability.

You with me here?

(elevator bell dings)

Miss Greene, I need
to talk to you.

I'm in a hurry. Yeah, listen,
I've talked to Maguire.

I've burned all
the bridges with him and...

Good for you.
I'm late for an interview.

Look, I want you to know I'm
going to get that stoplight,

regardless of what
the papers say.

Yeah, maybe you shouldn't
believe everything you read.

Listen, I need to talk
to the supervisors

that aren't part
of Maguire's machine,

but I don't know what their
agendas are, and I...

Look, I don't know how
to get in touch with them.

You asking me for help?

You know a lot more
on this than I do, I...

No, I'm
a journalist, Hobson.

I call you people on your
crap, I don't step in it.

No, you don't, do you?

You just sit up in your
big newspaper office

and pretend you're better
than everyone and everything.

You make a big joke
out of all of it.

Look, all I'm trying to do
is help some people, that's it.

All I want to do is to...

Oh, what am I
talking to you for?

You don't give a damn.

Hey, Hobson?

You want to start
with Mary Richardson.

You want to get with her,
you want to talk about

school improvements,

You got a pencil?

How did your mother

ever let you out of the house?

Write this down.

Talk to Richardson
about reading, okay?

That's the Head Start Program.
That's her baby, all right?

And then, you want
to talk to Woo...

Now, wait, wait a second...
let me get that reading program.

MOLLY: Yeah, with a
focus on preschool.

She'll be looking for
help in allotting money

for facilities
and material...

GARY: And I vote on that. Right.

Just remember, she's
on the school board, too.

It's all about education
with Richardson.

What about Woo?

Community policing.

That's the ticket with Woo.

He was robbed three
times last year,

and he wants an allocation
to put more beat cops

down in the neighborhoods.

GARY: That sounds fair.
Word to the wise:

he's got no sense of humor,
so don't make any jokes.

You'll really connect
with him if you remind him

you're a small
businessman yourself.

GARY: Okay, good. Woo is
close friends with Gonzalez.

So if Woo likes you,
Gonzalez is along for the ride.

Can I help you?

Health inspector.

Health inspector?

We just had a health
inspection two weeks ago.

Oh. Well, there have
been complaints.

From who?

Uh-oh, vermin


Ah, got rat droppings


All storage, prep
and cooking areas.

You're not even looking.

You're closed, pending
further inspection.

Anybody eats or drinks
anything in here until I

say so, you're looking
at serious jail time.

Wait a minute,
you just can't

come in...
Have a nice day.


Gary, that guy, he...

Hey, what's with y-your
parking spot?

They're towing away
your car out there.

My car?

They're towing my car?!

Hey! Give me
my car back!

Oh, man, this just gets
better and better.


Health inspection?

They're closing us down.

Shutting us down for what?

For voting the wrong way.

You happy now?

What do you mean, am I happy?

Look, what do
you want me to do?

You want me to take a bribe, is that it?
It's called compromise, Gare.

That is what this
country was founded on.

What is it that
Patrick Henry said?

"You got to give a little
to get a little."

I know how I'll get us out of this.

I'll resign. After I get
the stoplight, I'll resign.

Gary, they shut us down.

You can't win.
Forget about it.

Don't ever tell me
what I can't do.

He's one vote short.

All he's got to do is turn one
of Maguire's crew around,

and he gets his traffic light.



He really got to you,
didn't he?

Who? Hobson?

No, I just... I think he's got
a good issue, that's all.

Oh, there are lots
of good issues, Molly.

I've never seen you campaigning
behind the scenes for them.

I'm not ca...

Well, maybe I am.

It's, it's just I think
he really is

who he says he is, Dutch.

So is the Pope, Molly.

Doesn't mean he should
be mayor of Chicago.

No. But I know somebody
who could have been once.

Oh, yeah?


Hard-nosed idealist.

Had the respect
of the, uh, old liners,

the reformers...
What's your point, Molly?

My point is, see,
this guy was on his way,

but, uh, then he tripped.

Rumor was...
took a penny ante bribe.

Never came out in public,
but it was just enough,

you know,
for the power brokers

to drive him
into the back room,

where he stayed, 40 years.


Let me tell you
a little story, Molly.

Abraham Lincoln, when he was
in Illinois politics,

he was approached by a man
to buy his influence.

Well, Lincoln started to throw
the man down the stairs.

The man panicked,
and he said,

"What's the matter
with you, huh?

I didn't offer you enough?"

Well, Lincoln said,
"That's the problem.

You were getting
too close to my price."

Now, the difference between
Abe and me, Molly...

...I didn't get my man
to the staircase in time.

Now, I might know
which of the boys

could be persuaded to vote
for Hobson's traffic light.


Remember that
airport scandal last year?

There was another
supervisor involved.

And I got the goods.

Well, that's a hot story.

And it'd make one hell
of a story if I gave it to you.

But on the other hand,

if I kept it to myself,
and I called this fella

and I said,
"Now you vote for her boy,

if you know what's
good for you..."

what then?

And to make this an object
lesson in practical politics...

...I'm going to leave
the choice to you.


We're in a lot of trouble.

We don't get more
cash flow going,

we're going to have
to start laying people off.

We're not laying
anybody off.

How are we going
to pay them, Gary?

We are broke!

Another five days,
that's it.

All right,
so we take out a loan.

You know, you could
help a little bit.

(pounding on door)

We're closed!

know you're in there!

Who is that?
I don't know.

(pounding continues)

Uh, Gary...

I don't know how you
found out, Hobson,

but I want to tell you
flat out, it wasn't me.

It was my moron


Drop the act.

You've got my vote.

I got your vote?

What? You think I'd rather go
toe-to-toe with my wife?

Well, no, no. I...

I got to hand
it to you.

You're better at this
than I thought.

Whoa... What was
that all about?

I don't know, but it looks
like I got a, a vote,

so I got the stoplight.

Which that's good,
but I-I don't know.

(faucet running)
CHUCK: Gare?

(door closes)



(faucet running)

Hey, cat.

"Hobson's Unlikely Coalition
Wins Traffic Light Battle."

Ah. Hey, look, Gare.

You kind of stumbled out
of the blocks

with this political gig,
but with my expertise, I think

you're going
to be okay.

You do, huh?

Look, you just got
to listen to me more, okay?

Yeah, well, you know what I... what?

"Two die in gas explosion."

"An explosion killed two
construction workers

"yesterday at a downtown
condominium conversion.

"Authorities believe
the accident started

"when a welder cut through
an abandoned gas main

that appears to have been
reconnected by transients."

I gotta go.

Wait a minute. You...

After all this work,

you're not gonna miss
your own vote, are you?

What can I do?

Call the construction

I gotta go.

Gare, what about
the stoplight?

What about
your political future?

What about me?

Stall 'em.

Stall 'em how?

You're the political genius.

You figure it out.

(door shuts)

(indistinct chattering)

MAGUIRE: Next item is the
Wingate-Emerson traffic light,

although its sponsor,

Supervisor Hobson,
is not present...

Uh, Supervisor Hobson's
been delayed.

He's on his way.

He just couldn't be here
right now.


That's too bad.

I move we vote now

on the proposed
traffic light.

Oh, wait a minute. You can't.

Motion's been made.

Well, then, can I vote for him?
He told me that I could.

Sit down and be quiet,

or I will have you ejected
from this chamber.

This is for approval of a traffic light...
Where is he?

He's, uh, putting
out a fire.

MAGUIRE: ...Wingate Avenue
and Emerson Street.


Hey, wait! What are
you doing here?

You're not happy you screwed
up one project?

Listen... You're going for more?

Listen, there's gonna be a...
Get the hell out of here!

There's gonna
be an explo...!



Stay back!
Those tanks could blow!

All right.
I gotcha.

Come on.
Get out!

Come on!

All right,
I got your legs.

You'll be all right.

All right,
grab his feet.

Go on.


No, my leg's caught.
My leg's caught!

The motion's been made
and seconded.

I'm gonna have to do something.
Vote on the approval

of a traffic light at the
intersection of Wingate Avenue

and Emerson Street.

That's not fair!

(pounding gavel)

I will clear this hall

if there are any further

I'm madder than hell,

and I'm not gonna
take it anymore!

I've warned you.

Four score and...
seven years ago,

our forefathers

upon this continent
a new nation!

Conceived in liberty,

and dedicated
to the proposition

that all men are created equal!

(onlookers murmuring assent)
Including Chicagoans!

(cheering and applause)

(pounding gavel)

Order! Order!

Get him out of here!

Go on! Go on!


The tank's
gonna blow.

Go on!
Come on, Take it easy.

Go on, get him
out of here!

Get out!
Come on. Come on.


I'm out of order?!

You're out of order!

And you're out of order!

You're all out of order!

Out of order!

Out of order!




(pounding gavel)

This is an obstruction

of the First

There is a motion

on the floor.

Without further

call the question.

Not yet.


Table the motion
for further discussion.

Once the question's been called,

it's against procedure for
further discussion.

Don't tell me about procedures.

I helped write the damn

As a representative
of Supervisor Hobson,

I may make a final address after
the question has been called.

I wrote it, in case I had
to use it myself one day.

And I guess that day
is finally here.

There is no such rule.

Well, prove me wrong.

And until you do, I will
not give up the floor.

Get the rules
of procedure.

What is he doing?

I think he just made it back

to the top of the stairs.


In the meantime...

I'd like to thank everyone
for coming here today.

I see we have some families
from Wingate-Emerson,

where they need this light.

Maybe you could all
stand up. Hmm?

Come on, stand up,
all of you.

Introduce yourselves.

One at a time.

Don't be nervous.

And you take
as long as you need.

What's your name, darling?



How old are you,


Come on!


Don't come any closer!
The whole floor could go!

Come on.
Grab my arm.

Come on. Come on.
(Coveleski screams)

Come on. Come on.

Here we go.



(car alarm blaring)

You okay?


Hey, h-how's your leg?

Still attached.

Aren't you supposed
to be at a supervisor's

council meeting?


So what are you doing here?

Huh? Uh...

When I was a young man,

I went down
to my precinct office,

and I told them I wanted
to be involved.

Well, Easy Ed Murphy,
the old precinct boss,

he asked me, he says,
"What do you really want?"

And I told him.

I said I wanted
to make a difference.

He told me
to get lost.

He said, "We don't want
nobody around here

who don't want nothing."

But I'm still here.

And you know,

I think I still want
the same thing.

Okay, Dutch,
you've said your piece.

Hobson hasn't shown.

I think it's time
for you to sit down.

Not yet.

Been too long since I stood up.

It's kind of nice.

I like it.


Maybe more of us should stand up
(door opens)

when we feel the need,
if you get my meaning.

But on the other hand...

...I am an old man,
and I'm getting tired.

I yield the floor for the vote.

Move to postpone the vote.

Oh, you do?

I believe it's
in the best interest

of many of us present

if there's
no vote today.

Vote on the traffic light.

Not a good idea.

I personally would
like to see the vote.

Certain parties better stop

Now, who would that be?

I could have you removed.

You try to throw me out,

I might hold a press
conference in the hall

to talk about
how contracts

are awarded
for city office buildings.

You know...

things like that.



You want to cut your own throat?

Excuse me, Mr. Chairman?

I have something to say.

Okay, I-I want
to say something.

Then you can go back
and do whatever you want to do.

First of all,
no one here has to vote

any other way than what
their conscience tells them to.

Now, second of all...

Look, I just became
a politician a few days ago.

But, uh...

Well, I've got
a confession to make.

And that is, I work for a boss.

But, eh... well, it's not you.

And it's not you.

And it's not you or you or you...
it's not any of you.

This... this is my boss.

And I've got to do
right by her.

We all do.

Because if we don't,
we're not doing our job.

And we should
recognize that.

Are you with me here?

Approve that light,

I'll put it up
free of charge.

Throw in new curbs,
a new traffic island...

Ah, hell, I'll build them
a new park,

so they got something to do once
they cross the street.

Put that in your pipe
and smoke it.

All in favor?

Motion passed.

(cheering and applause)

Come to or... Come to order!

This meeting
has not been adjourned.

(applause and whistles)


Mr. Hobson, I believe
you wanted the floor.

I do? Oh, yeah, I do.
I, I, I do.

I-I have some, uh...

Well, I have some
new business to present.

It's about my resignation.

And, uh...

Well, I'm, uh...

I'm going to resign
under one condition, you see.

And that is that I get
to name my replacement.

You don't get
to name anything!

Oh, why don't you
just shut up?

(applause and murmurs)

Thank you. Thank you.

I... well, I'd
like to name

someone who I think, uh...

well, I think who,
in different times,

would have been, uh...

Well, I nominate
Dutch Van Drie.

Oh, take it, Dutch.

It's only about
40 years overdue.

What the hell.


Just don't let them down, huh?

Don't you worry.

This old lion's still
got a few roars left in him.

And I plan to rattle a few bones
before I'm through.

MOLLY: "In the end, this isn't
a story about a traffic light,

"or how cynicism
can blind you,

or how politics
can make you cynical."

"Or how somebody
with nothing but good intent

"can triumph over
insurmountable odds.

Or how you're never
too old for redemption."

(indistinct chatter)

"No, what this story is about

"is how a city
can have a soul,

"like any other living thing.

"And how that soul
is kept alive

"by the people
in the neighborhoods,

"in the stores,
the churches, the bars,

"the back rooms, meeting halls,

and anywhere we gather together
to get something done."

And that, as they say,
is all she wrote.