Monday, December 29, 2008

Quinn On Board With Special Election; Obama Updates; Lake County Young Republicans Are Back

Well, I missed it yesterday, but Lt. Gov. Pat Quinn told CBS' "Face the Nation" that he thought Governor Rod Blagojevich would be ousted by February, and Quinn, once installed as Guv, would call for a special election to fill Barack Obama's vacant senate seat. Read the AP report here. Note that Quinn may be trying to have it both ways, as he also told CBS he would do an interim appointment... so unless he appoints someone who vows not to run in a special, Quinn would be giving whomever he appointed a serious leg up in the special election.

I can't keep track of how many times Quinn has gone back and forth on this, and nothing's sure until this all goes down, but at least for now it looks like the GOP may be back in the running to take that seat, with 10th District Congressman Mark Kirk still
leading the pack of most likely GOP contenders, with 6th District Congressman Peter Roskam also getting more than a few mentions.

On Obama watch, lots to think about as his presidency starts to kick into gear in advance of his inauguration on Jan. 20th. Obama (through David Axelrod) is back to his
pledge of middle class tax cuts, despite the worsening economy, and ending tax cuts for the so-called rich, that is, families earning more than $250,000 per year. Well, as we predicted during the campaign, there are going to be a lot of dual-income families on the North Shore who are going to be crying in their Lattes at Starbucks once the effect of those increased taxes hit.

Also, as we noted last week, Obama's very first internal investigation (mind you, this is before he has even been sworn in) has cleared him, because
his own lawyer says he's cleared. Well, Obama may have overreached yet again, and perhaps he will get called on it this time, as there is a factor that no one can predict or control in this mix, even Obama, and that's Governor Blagojevich.

As syndicated columnist Rick Horowitz (published locally in the Tribune) notes, incoming White House counsel Greg Craig said of Obama's staff, "No one was approached with any kind of deal." However, that's not what Blago seemed to suggest as revealed by Patrick Fitzgerald, which was that Obama's staff refused to offer anything for the senate seat except "appreciation."

As Horowitz points out, at first blush, this clears Obama's staff, but if you really think about it, why was Blago so sure that Obama's people weren't going to make a 'deal' if a 'deal' wasn't offered? And that's what Craig said: "No one was approached," not that no one took the deal, which seems to be what Blago's taped comments implied.

Horowitz seems to dismiss the obvious conclusion, which is either that some of Obama's staffers, or Craig himself, are shading the truth. But he does note that if such is the case, Mr. Fitzgerald has not been known to take kindly to liars. Perhaps the truth will come out if the Blago tapes are made public, at some point.

Locally, the official Lake County Young Republicans group is getting a boost as Collin Corbett, formerly campaign manager for congressional candidate Steve Greenberg's campaign, is taking the lead in rejuvenating the group. Official elections for officer positions will be held in April/May. Contact the Lake County YRs at for more info.


Anonymous said...


Alot on the blog - my thoughts - the ONLY reason Obama's folks may have skated out of negotiating is shear ARROGANCE - Obama is now President-Elect and he will determine the need for negotiations. But he is certainly not exempt from negotiating, or mastering the art of quid pro quo, etc. Below are just 3 of probably hundreds of examples the media will fail to provide:

1) Rezko was an Obama fundraiser
2) Rezko was available to assist in the purchase of the Obama estate, by purchasing the lot next to Obama, selling 10' of the lot back to Obama for below market value, leaving the remaining vacant parcel "unbuildable".
3) Obama's wife received a nearly 200% increase in her salary after he was elected Illinois 2nd US Senator.

And on the topic of Illinois' 2nd US Senator. I believe Illinois, during this difficult economic downturn, should simply take the money for the U.S. Senate salary and all the perks that come with it and simply pay down its debt.

After all, Obama was running for President during most of his term in office anyway. He certainly wasn't representing us!

Another thought - maybe instead of electing public servants or patronage hacks, we should implement the call to service, much as in a jury. A per diem fee and health coverage during the period of service and a nice plaque upon completion of service. There you go, I just saved the taxpayers billions of wasted dollars!

Anonymous said...

This whole thing is a disgrace, not only that we knew Blago was scum in 2006 and couldn't put up a fight on him, but that Andy McKenna had Peter Fitzgerald shanghaied opening the door for Obama in 2004.

The party continues to find new bottoms on the political ocean floor. Thank goodness we have a Congressman chasing refugees in Bangladesh and and a party chairman who seems to show up more in the society pages than on the first tuesday of November.