Heilemann nodded, adding, “There’s a lot of black people in Chicago.”
Indeed there are. Though it’s worth noting that the Windy City is still more white than black. Its mayor, Rahm Emanuel, who just happens to have been Obama’s chief of staff, isn’t particularly dark-skinned. Oh, and Barack Obama, the incumbent president, launched and built his entire political career in Chicago, a city synonymous with cutthroat machine politics for more than a century. And it’s where the Obama reelection headquarters are. Countless white reporters at the New York Times, NBC, NPR, the Washington Post, and elsewhere use the term “Chicago” as a shorthand for the Obama campaign. But when Republicans say “Chicago” (which few did at the Republican convention, by the way), there can be no doubt: It’s a stand-in for the N-word.