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Monday, Aug 27, 2007

Apparently, some of you can’t behave when I’m gone. So the handful of morons who took advantage of my absence means there will be no more comments until I return. Paul may or may not blog. That’s up to him. But comments are off for the duration of my break.

- Posted by Rich Miller   Comments Off      


Blago sues over special sessions

Monday, Aug 27, 2007

As many of you have caught by now, the Governor is filing suit to force Speaker Madigan to hold special sessions

From Bernie Schoenburg

The lawsuit, filed quietly in Sangamon County Circuit Court on Friday, also asks a judge to ban Madigan from excusing House members from attending special sessions.

Rebbeca Rausch, a spokeswoman for the governor, said the suit was filed to make sure the legislature deals with “critical issues facing the state.”

“It is imperative that (the governor’s authority to call special sessions) is preserved and honored,” she wrote in an e-mail to sj-r.com. “After lawmakers failed to follow the governor’s special session proclamations to address serious issues like funding for the CTA, RTA, and downstate mass transit, we asked the court to confirm the governor’s authority.”

Steve Brown, spokesman for Madigan, said the lawsuit is just a continuation of the governor’s repeated special session calls this summer.

I suspect there’ll be a motion to dismiss filed and the suit will be dismissed, Brown said. It has been well documented that some calls for special sessions came when there was no proposed legislation on which to act, he said.

They’ve made a farce of the special session process, Brown said of the governor.

From comments, the entire suit can be download here

Sorry for the brevity. Gotta run to teach a class.

Discuss.

- Posted by Paul Richardson   36 Comments      


QOTD

Monday, Aug 27, 2007

I’ve been picking up on a lot of recent chatter about sex offender laws. Glance through some of these stories:

* Chambers: Treatment, supervision often missing with sex offenders

* Are ‘get tough’ on sex offender laws getting too tough?

* Police face limited resources in tracking sex offenders

* If sex offender laws don’t work, what does?

Question: What do you think? Are things too strict? Too lenient? Just right?

- Posted by Paul Richardson   28 Comments      


Upcoming Elections

Monday, Aug 27, 2007

* Illinois keeps Obama fundraising above water

In fact, of every $3 in campaign money raised in Illinois this year for any presidential candidate, $2 of it went to Obama.

Obamas lopsided financial support in Illinois comes at a time when the state is gaining new relevance in the presidential nomination process. Illinois has pushed its 2008 primaries up to February, after a declaration by state leaders that they wanted to help Obama.

That means the states large cache of voters will go to the polls before any candidate has locked up the nomination.

Illinois Democrats have moved heaven and earth to assist Sen. Obama, and he is a fundraising machine, said state Sen. Kirk Dillard, a Chicago-area Republican.

* Oberweis launches GOP bid to succeed Hastert

“My goal in life has been to be a U.S. congressman,” Oberweis, 61, said after a rally at the North Aurora plant for his namesake boutique dairy. “The fact that I was running for the Senate was really an accident — partly caused by Denny Hastert, by the way, who asked me to get involved at that time.”

Oberweis finished second for the GOP nomination for the U.S. Senate in 2002, despite Hastert’s endorsement, and in 2004. The following election, he finished second in his bid for the 2006 Republican nomination for governor. In those three elections, he spent nearly $7 million of his own money, including more than $3.3 million in the primary for governor.

* Many seek Devine’s job

* Cook Co. Recorder of Deeds plans run for third term

- Posted by Paul Richardson   32 Comments      


Da Budget and other money stuff

Monday, Aug 27, 2007

* Oops. I forgot to link Rich’s syndicated column this week on Blago’s ‘political’ veto

* Pork plays its own politics

On one hand, it’s a rare opportunity — especially for suburban politicians — to bring home state tax dollars. Without it, “we wouldn’t see anything,” state Sen. John Millner, a Carol Stream Republican said.

That’s because household incomes and high property values tend to disqualify many suburban communities for state funding through traditional bureaucracies.

The idea behind letting members add on to the budget is that they know best what’s needed back home.
On the other hand, questionable projects and the secretive nature of it all leads to inevitable criticism.

* Illinois budget standoff ended

* Insulting to call it ‘pork’

* Gov’s budget moves ’so political’

* Governor’s plan for health care in panel’s hands

* Special sessions aren’t so special

* Hilkevitch: RTA still on fast track to cuts

The sad reality that the state’s politicians are allowing the mobility of the Chicago region to go down to the wire indicates to many observers that the RTA’s “Moving Beyond Congestion” campaign on behalf of increased mass-transit funding has failed miserably, while enriching politically connected RTA consultants hired to run the campaign.

“I think the evidence suggests that the RTA legislative strategy was a bust,” said Joseph Schofer, a transportation professor at Northwestern University. “They sang a song of [CTA and Metra] line extensions while the system was going down. And they did not deliver on long-promised reforms. It’s bad.”

House Speaker Michael Madigan (D-Chicago) has promised to try to resolve the monthslong stalemate between the General Assembly and Blagojevich, who vows to veto any new taxes, in time to prevent the impending transit doomsday.

* Editorial: At least state finally has a budget, but game not over

* Editorial: State budget a bust for the suburbs

* Editorial: Tale of a greedy gov

* Schoenburg: Dillard on budget

- Posted by Paul Richardson   27 Comments      


Morning Shorts

Monday, Aug 27, 2007

* Odds Gov. Ryan will do time?

* Tribune Editorial: How free trade boosts Illinois

Here’s another example you can use. Illinois sells about $1 billion worth of pork each year. Nearly 13 percent of pork-related jobs here are tied to exports. Eliminating tariffs on U.S. pork sold in South Korea would increase the demand and could add $10 to the price of a live hog. The Latin America pacts combined could raise live hog prices by another $2.66 per hog. That’s good for Illinois pork producers.

* 29 counties take on gun legislation

* ComEd rate relief on ice

* Law puts restrictions on highway hiring practices

* Vickroy: Driving law causes rift between mother and child

* New law to change driver’s ed curriculum

* New law targets metal thieves

* Stricter rules for dental sedation

* Illinois officials seek review of BP air quality variance

* Lawyers: Blog libeled us

“You can say I’m an idiot, but you can’t say I’m a crook,” Sterk said. “Just because it’s a blog, people think they can hide behind a veil of secrecy. They can’t. And that’s going to be an expensive lesson for someone.”

The suit, filed in Cook County Circuit Court, seeks damages from the blog and its creator, listed as John Doe.

- Posted by Paul Richardson   11 Comments      


This Week…

Monday, Aug 27, 2007

Don’t fret.

My mountain of work and school obligations will prevent me from having as much blog fun as I would like this week. A sliver of free time right when the sun comes up is all I’ll likely have.

But, that doesn’t mean that the conversations have to stop.

While Rich takes his long overdue and much deserved blog hiatus, there will still be a few Morning-Shorts-esque posts each day.

So please, keep talking. :)

- Posted by Paul Richardson   5 Comments      


Budget veto stories

Saturday, Aug 25, 2007

The fallout continues…

- Posted by Rich Miller   Comments Off      


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* *** UPDATED x2 *** Quinn campaign responds to Sun-Times endorsement decision
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