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Duped and dumped

Tuesday, Oct 31, 2006

Eric Zorn apparently believes that he’s bought into an ad campaign, not a reality. The headline is “Don’t be duped by Blagojevich’s snide TV ads.” And here’s how it ends:

If you vote for Blagojevich because you admire what he’s done in office and believe his promises, fine. But if you vote against Topinka because you now believe that there’s no difference in the integrity, sincerity or political courage of these two candidates, then you’re just the sucker Blagojevich was hoping you’d be. He started this as Mr. Squandered Opportunity, an earnest twit best known for expensive grandstanding and breaking his promise to reform the system in Illinois.

The millions he spent flinging offal at Topinka and sowing general revulsion has paid off, as it was nearly bound to in a Democratic state. He’s still unpopular–just 40 percent of the public views him favorably, according to our recent poll–but he’s succeeded in making her even more unpopular and racking up a 15-point lead in our poll.

Barack Obama writes of the audacity of hope. Rod Blagojevich practices the audacity of cynicism. I almost fell for it. Will you?

* Meanwhile, Topinka is finally forced to dump Kj.

Republican Judy Baar Topinka spoke out Monday against a top GOP official linked to a plot to squeeze kickbacks out of companies doing business with the state […]

Topinka stopped short of calling for Bob Kjellander, treasurer of the national Republican Party, to resign. But she said he should step down if he was involved in any misconduct.

“If Bob Kjellander has done … something wrong here, he needs to resign from his party post,” Topinka said before kicking off a statewide coffee-shop tour to talk to voters about the state’s financial situation.

- Posted by Rich Miller        


41 Comments
  1. - Real Clear - Tuesday, Oct 31, 06 @ 8:34 am:

    Come on, that’s no dumping of Kjellander. That’s more propping-up.

    If her standard is convicted by a jury, that could be a couple of years away, at best. Topinka will be retired on her fat state pensions and long forgotten way before then.


  2. - Cassandra - Tuesday, Oct 31, 06 @ 8:40 am:

    I think it’s a little late to be critizing Kjellander. The Repubs should have got rid of him eons ago; even with all the money, he has done them more harm than good. And his supposed White House connections have been useless this cycle. He’s made a lot of money off politics though. For himself.

    Having said that, this criticism by JBT seems a bit late in the game, even opportunistic.

    My guess is that the 40 percent who favor
    Blago are for the most part not ardent fans, they just see him as a conduit to get at least
    some money back to the regular folks from the vast yet corrupt state money coffers. Allkids, school outlays, open tolling…it’s not much but it’s better than giving all the money to corrupt state contractors, a grossly overstaffed and overpaid state bureaucracy, jails full of first time drug offenders and really dysfunctional agencies like DCFS, DHS, and IDOT.


  3. - Rich Miller - Tuesday, Oct 31, 06 @ 8:42 am:

    RC, I don’t think she said that was the standard. Maybe “dumped” was a bit much, but I couldn’t resist the alliteration in the headline.

    Also, out of curiosity, what do you think ought to be Gov. Blagojevich’s “standard” for Chris Kelly?


  4. - Sister Mary Elephant - Tuesday, Oct 31, 06 @ 8:45 am:

    I am amazed that Blago can be named as “Public Official A” and the “public official” who would benefit from the shakedown, and some actively work against his opponent and for his re-election.

    Then these same people then call for “Individual K” to resign, be denounced, and used as a litmus test.

    Incongruent? Yes.

    The KJ comment is a no-brainer.

    Nonetheless, even calling for KJ’s public beheading would not satisfy some, who will stop at nothing less than a Blagojevich victory.


  5. - Shelbyville - Tuesday, Oct 31, 06 @ 8:46 am:

    Until the past 2 years, I never knew anyone personally that was in prison. Now, counting the ones that are there and the ones that are trying really hard to get in, I know 6 or 7 people. Who would have thought?


  6. - Squideshi - Tuesday, Oct 31, 06 @ 8:50 am:

    How much can people actually take? When are people just going to stop putting up with this and simply abandon both candidates? How clear could it possibly be that Rich Whitney is the only real choice?


  7. - Anonymous - Tuesday, Oct 31, 06 @ 9:02 am:

    The problem with Eric Zorn is dispite all the corruption and Rod’s nasty lies. Eric is still voting for him. As I said before it doesn’t matter how much corruption there is in the state, city or county as long as you fill the Christmas stockings with more feel good social programs.


  8. - Snark - Tuesday, Oct 31, 06 @ 9:17 am:

    Shorter Zorn: I used to be a sucker and I think you still are so sit back and relax while I talk down to you.


  9. - Real Clear - Tuesday, Oct 31, 06 @ 9:17 am:

    Rich, to answer your question, it should be “the appearence of impropriety” standard for state staff and party posts. So absolutely, if that’s the case for Kelly, the guy should be thrown off the bus.

    There is a case to be made that voters can “fire” a public official at a regular election.

    And by the way, I think convicted or at least indicted is exactly the standard Topinka’s using. Actually she’s not giving it that much thought. She just wants to slide around the issue with minimal heat. Her line about Kjellander is just a throw away.

    I would also say that the Dem party really isn’t the one that holds itself out as the good government party. Dirty Republicans always have a tougher time as their base holds them to a higher standard.

    Evidence when Mayor Daley wins by 30 or so points again next year. As long as the El trains run on time, that’s all most look at.


  10. - United State of Illinois Employees - Tuesday, Oct 31, 06 @ 9:20 am:

    Vlad Corruptovich sucking the very moral life/fiber from Illinois. Time to wake up!


  11. - Guy Fawkes - Tuesday, Oct 31, 06 @ 9:27 am:

    Gov. Blagojevich’s “standard” for Chris Kelly will change as everyday unfolds new truths.
    Rod is an out of control megalomanic surrounded little mini-megalomaniacs.
    This whole administration is in major denial!


  12. - He Makes Ryan look like a saint - Tuesday, Oct 31, 06 @ 9:28 am:

    As a republican, I am sick of what is going on in the party. It has been ongoing from the state party level. The rich kept getting richer….I actually thought it would be nice to get the dems in to get rid of the FAT CATS…..Then I saw what has been going on, They turned it up to an even greater level in less time.

    It is time to rid the state of these blood suckers from BOTH parties.


  13. - Justice - Tuesday, Oct 31, 06 @ 9:29 am:

    I believe the Feds will have Blogo so tied up this next year he will find little time to screw things up much further. As for JBT and Bob Kjellander….that comment was weak at best, for crying out loud what else would she feel compelled to say, they are pals!! Unfortunately she lets herself keep getting sidetracked from her message, whatever that is? Regarding Chris Kelly and Blogo’s statement… “If it’s true about Chris, I feel betrayed.” Yeah, right. GoverNOT/Elvis is well on his way to the big house where he can ponder all those friends and close advisors who betrayed him. Looks like Whitney and the Green party will be the winners this election.


  14. - Little Egypt - Tuesday, Oct 31, 06 @ 9:43 am:

    If GoverNOT Hairdo is re-elected, it will just be a mandate for him to continue his “business as usual” and this time with avengance. He’s too stupid to understand the consequences of his actions. Can you imagine him trying to do Press Releases of the Day with the Feds to answer their questions? They’ll find him in contempt faster than he can say Neanderthal. I cannot compromise and vote for this robot. And I sure wish the people of Illinois will pull a “November Surprise” at the polls next Tuesday for Elvis and company.


  15. - Truthful James - Tuesday, Oct 31, 06 @ 9:52 am:

    I am sure that Bob Kjellander is making plans to don sackcloth and ashes and will issue an apology for doing something wrong. — not.

    It is disengenuous of Judy B to think the conservatives, whom she is desparately trying to attract, would accept such a wishy washy statements. Nothing less than his resignation as National Committeeman will do. He could merely issue a statement saying the role of National Treasurer is taking up my time..

    He won’t.


  16. - I.D.O.T. Bleachers - Tuesday, Oct 31, 06 @ 10:03 am:

    What would Elliot Ness do?


  17. - Downstater - Tuesday, Oct 31, 06 @ 10:13 am:

    The state of politics in Illinois is sickening. The GOP is imploding and the Dems are just disgusting. If this poor excuse for a Governor is the best the Dems have to lead the state what kind of future do we the citizens have to look forward to? A huge tax increase. We now have the highest debt liability in the nation. Another 4 years of the same fiscal policy of borrowing and pillaging will only make it worse. We need to clean house and start from scratch. The stench is overwhelming.


  18. - Tessa - Tuesday, Oct 31, 06 @ 11:09 am:

    Gotta say I agree with you Downstater. I can’t wait until this election is over, but I know next Tuesday night when the results come in, I’m going to be sicker than ever. Not enough change can happen and not soon enough.


  19. - RAI - Tuesday, Oct 31, 06 @ 11:22 am:

    Who asked on GOP day 05 with him on the stage for Kejellander to resign? Who said Celini had to go? Who said it was time for our government to secure our borders and stop the invasion of illegals? who said we need someone NOT connected to either side to clean up the mess in Springfield?

    OBERWEIS!
    We told you so!


  20. - Bubs - Tuesday, Oct 31, 06 @ 12:24 pm:

    Zorn is overlooking a fundamental flaw in the American voter: everyone complains about negative ads, but we LOVE to watch them and they work. Just ask Topinka.


  21. - Anonymous - Tuesday, Oct 31, 06 @ 12:30 pm:

    A vote for the green guy is a vote for Blago.


  22. - Raw Dog - Tuesday, Oct 31, 06 @ 1:05 pm:

    Anyone know what Illinois law is concerning a recall election or impeachment of a sitting governor in Illinois is?


  23. - Poor Milorad - Tuesday, Oct 31, 06 @ 1:11 pm:

    Unfortunately, we get the government we deserve because a large percentage of the voters are too lazy and do not have the initiative to study the candidates’ positions on critical issues. Many voters’ sole source of knowledge comes from those 30 second commercials and then they head off to the voting booth feeling all good about their right to vote. The days of the informed voter are gone.

    It’s even more disheartening to hear Blagojevich supporters talk of all the things he is going to do in his next term should he be re-elected but when questioned about all of his broken promises (puffery) from his last campaign they just discount your skepticism as being cynical.


  24. - Shelbyville - Tuesday, Oct 31, 06 @ 1:42 pm:

    There is no recall in IL.


  25. - sideliner - Tuesday, Oct 31, 06 @ 1:50 pm:

    Truth of the matter is the Republican Party would be much further ahead if at the State Covention a couple years ago when this all was floating around they took a stand against BK and dumped him.. Hey so much for the party of ethics…. Could have sent a message loud and clear that what he did was wrong and he didn’t deserve the support of the committeemen and women… Makes you wonder what else is out there on others who keep BK… Hmmm JBT


  26. - Peachy - Tuesday, Oct 31, 06 @ 2:52 pm:

    blah blah blah RAI. Yes, Oberweis is so “right” on all those issues you mentioned that he jumped to endorse Topinka who remains exactly on the wrong side. He obviously thought integrity was something that only applied in the primary.


  27. - Buck Flagojevich - Tuesday, Oct 31, 06 @ 2:53 pm:

    There are 11 million people in this state. And we have these two, RB & JBT, to serve as our choices for Governor.

    We could, and should deserve better. Shame on us, the voters.


  28. - Buck Flagojevich - Tuesday, Oct 31, 06 @ 3:04 pm:

    One more thing to add regarding Illinois voters. Did you notice there was a bigger outcry for the Bears GM’s head, Jerry Angelo, when the Bears were horrible than there has been regarding the behavior of our elected officials? That says volumes about the attention span of the majority of the voters.


  29. - Citizen A - Tuesday, Oct 31, 06 @ 3:08 pm:

    Out of 11 million does anyone have the actual number of people who cast votes in the last election ?


  30. - Downstater - Tuesday, Oct 31, 06 @ 3:13 pm:

    Buck,
    You are right. Due to the inattention of the majority of voters in this state we are stuck with what we have. A bunch of partisan hacks who care more about their political future than the citizens that elected them. Some may disagree, but career politicians who are greedy and crave power are the root of the problem.


  31. - Little Egypt - Tuesday, Oct 31, 06 @ 3:13 pm:

    Buck, there aren’t many of us who don’t have some kind of skeleton in our closet and we want it to stay there even after death. Nothing is a secret anymore in politics. The press is ready to quarter each and every candidate. What fun would it be for them if there were a perfect candidate? If there was nothing wrong to be found, they would make it up. Unfortunately for that reason, the best will NEVER run for public office. We are reduced to slim pickins. This would have been a better election if the playing field was level for all candidates; i.e. equal funding, equal access to the press, equal advertising time in the media, and at least 4 mandatory debates - 1 in Chicago and the other 3 downstate. I could enjoy an election like that. What I’d like to see now is a legislature with coconuts that will strengthen what little ethics laws we have and make it impossible for any future governor to campaign with state money like GoverNOT Hairdo has done. I’d like to see the legislature keep a future governor from going around 4 months before election promising $1M here and $1M there to buy votes only to renege on his promise and those groups/schools/cities never see a dime. I’d like to see an attorney general with the coconuts to take him/her to court for doing so. This has been such an gross misuse of taxpayer money for Elvis to put his name on everything and send out mass mailings from almost every department so that each household gets at least one mailing before election that has his name on it. I want to know why no one has stopped it. And I’m proud to say I have been left off the list of mailings - I didn’t get a single one and that does not make me angry.


  32. - Frank - Tuesday, Oct 31, 06 @ 3:19 pm:

    Don’t blame me, I voted for Oberweis!


  33. - Bubs - Tuesday, Oct 31, 06 @ 3:47 pm:

    I can only shudder at the mincemeat the Blago ads would have made out of Oberweis.


  34. - Citizen A - Tuesday, Oct 31, 06 @ 5:00 pm:

    If Kjellander and Cellini were IN FACT so close to Topinka then she would not have a shortage of money for her campaign. Obviously that fact alone proves their lack of support or “closeness” to her. She did srate some time back that she hadn’t communicated with cellini for more than ten years. That’s hardly closeness !


  35. - Conservative Republican - Tuesday, Oct 31, 06 @ 6:23 pm:

    How lame for Topinka to stiff Kjellander. If it were not for Kjellander, she wouldn’t be the gubernatorial nominee. While State Party Chairman, she lined up state support behind Kjellander’s reelection as Republican National Committeeman. Now, a week before the election, she apparently caves in to panic, and makes a spineless negative remark about Kjellander (maybe she will say “I haven’t any dealings with him for over 10 years”). There isn’t even a sliver of a suggestion that Kjellander did anything illegal.

    If that is how Judy acts under these circumstances, how spineless would she be as governor?


  36. - Max Maxwell - Tuesday, Oct 31, 06 @ 6:29 pm:

    Rich- Do you have the text of the state’s famous “ethics test” which employees were required to take? It has been referred to often on this site but it would be interesting for those who haven’t seen it to compare it to the Gov’s behavior…


  37. - Citizen A - Tuesday, Oct 31, 06 @ 8:32 pm:

    the text of the state’s famous “ethics test” -
    Unavailable - denied Freedom of Information Act request. Do you see a pattern here ?


  38. - Tony Soprano - Tuesday, Oct 31, 06 @ 8:44 pm:

    Hey, I’m lookin’ fer work and I got next week available.


  39. - T.J. - Wednesday, Nov 1, 06 @ 4:39 am:

    Yes, Oberweis is so “right” on all those issues you mentioned that he jumped to endorse Topinka who remains exactly on the wrong side. He obviously thought integrity was something that only applied in the primary.

    No, he recognizes Baar Topinka is superior to Blagojevich. Not everyone is a sore loser.


  40. - Truthful James - Wednesday, Nov 1, 06 @ 8:24 am:

    Conservative Republican

    You are certainly not what your name implies. JudyB is indeed being disengenuous, but the main post-ptimary agenda for Conservative support in the General was removal of Kjellander as national Committeeman. It could have been orchestrated without looking like a demotion. JudyB would not. Her handlers told her that she did not need to ask for the Conservative votes, that they would have to come grovelling back. We did not.

    Now she offers the stupid pre-coffee shop tour comment, as if one of her major handlers would leave — if he had done something wrong.

    She does not get it, Jim Edgar does not get it, the IlGoP does not get it. And you do not get it, sir.


  41. - Truthful James - Wednesday, Nov 1, 06 @ 8:29 am:

    Citizen A –

    Ask JudyB if the Springfield Ramada Renaissance Hotel Bonds resonates. This was the Jim Thompson/Jim Edgar/Bill Cellini boondoggle for wich JudyB as Treasurer was expected to take the fall.


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