It’s not literally true that Langdon Neal and his law firm are involved in every major political deal in Chicago. But sometimes it seems that way.

“I hope it’s because we do good work,” Neal says. “Our firm is 75 years old, and this is our specialty.”

He’s referring to his firm’s expertise in real estate and zoning law. But he and his partners at Neal & Leroy aren’t bad at the political part either: they’ve made millions of dollars working for governmental bodies, then turning around and lobbying some of the same bodies for other high-paying clients.

This is how Chicago works.

I was reminded of this again earlier this week, when I read the Tribune‘s fine story about the heavy-hitting real estate interests involved in the DePaul stadium and hotel project—the one near McCormick Place that’s set to use at least $55 million in taxpayer funds.

Near the bottom of the story—and you should read it to the bottom—Neal was identified as the chief negotiator for the city and McPier, the state authority that runs Navy Pier and McCormick Place.

It was the third time I’d come across Neal’s name in as many days.