It's a bit early to try to call the 10th Dem primary between Jay Footlik and Dan Seals. Despite the polls released by Seals that show him with a huge lead in name recognition, I still have reservations about those polls and how they were conducted. And, even with the election only a few weeks away now, there is still plenty that can happen that would make those numbers meaningless.
For example, I am one of those people that still tend to think that newspaper endorsements matter, at least among a certain segment of the electorate, especially the undecided voters that in political parlance, tend to "break late." So far, the only major area newspaper group to do an endorsement (unless you count the Waukegan News-Sun, which more or less endorsed Dan Seals even before he announced he was running for re-election) is the Pioneer Press, which endorsed Seals. We criticized the Pioneer Press endorsement earlier, noting among other issues that the endorsement was made without the benefit of the recent debates and seemed to tout Seals mostly as the most 'winnable' candidate, rather than the best candidate.
But, I'm going to go out on a limb and predict that the Chicago Tribune and the Daily Herald will both endorse Footlik over Seals. Based on Footlik's performance in the debates, and also before the Tribune editorial board, which video was made available some weeks ago, it is clear that Footlik is the candidate with much more depth and ability to articulate and address the issues. Seals tends to repeat the same points he raised in the last election, and his appreciation of these issues has all the depth of a kiddie wading pool. If the MSM has been paying any attention at all to issues raised on this Blog and elsewhere, they also should have some pretty serious concerns about Seals and his work history, and especially his dubious claims to be a "current" professor at Northwestern University when he doesn't start teaching until AFTER the primary.
Seals may have done well against Kirk and have a bigger base and more name recognition, but that's not what newspaper endorsements should be about in my opinion--it should be about who is the better candidate to (potentially) represent the people of the 10th District in Congress. Tribune endorsement in the 10th is expected tomorrow; not sure about the Herald.
As to whether these endorsements will make or break the primary race, who's to say?, but I can guarantee that it will breathe new life into Footlik's campaign if he walks away with one, or especially, both endorsements, and stems the tide of Seals' self-proclaimed inevitability as the primary winner.
SPEAKING OF ENDORSEMENTS: The Tribune ran its first set of Congressional endorsements today, and Dan Seals must be seething. Mark Kirk was mentioned twice as an example of great bi-partisan cooperation on important issues in the Chicago area, both with Dan Lipinksi and Melissa Bean, and Kirk doesn't even face a primary opponent!
I was also remiss in not noting earlier that Steve Greenberg received the Trib's endorsement over his primary opponents Ken Arnold and Kirk Morris. Way to go Steve!