* GOP gubernatorial candidate Sen. Kirk Dillard voted to tax and legalize video poker machines to pay for part of the capital bill in May. Now that he’s running for governor, he’s changed his mind…
Dillard said he was torn in his vote, but ultimately said he wanted to keep his word to labor unions and business groups to support a major public works package.
“I had a gun to my head,” he said during an interview with the Daily Herald editorial board Thursday.
Dillard said that if he is elected governor, he would reconsider the legalization of video gambling machines even though he voted for it in the state Senate. He did speak out against video gambling expansion as he voted for it.
So, he was against it, but he voted for it because of a “gun” to his head, and if elected governor he would “reconsider” the whole thing.
And how would Dillard replace that poker money? Magic ponies!
Dillard said he would prefer to see the state use revenue from the sales tax on gasoline to cover the needed cash. Yet, he admits that would blow a $400 million hole in a state budget already billions of dollars in the red.
To cover that, Dillard said he would “grow the economy,” hoping for new tax dollars from more jobs and sales.
* CNN covers the Mark Kirk Twitter probe by the Department of Defense without a single hat tip here, but does have this…
While the source did not think the congressman revealing his location was a huge deal (in this particular case), the official was less sure of the other questions the incident raised [about campaigning at the Pentagon].
The source told CNN, “Given who the individual is and how people can perceive things, it is interesting. We are aware of it and we are looking into it.”
* Not a great lede for Mark Kirk and probably not true, either…
North suburban Congressman, and U.S. Senate candidate Mark Kirk, says it’s time he sees the rest of the state.
Kirk says he’ll begin a statewide tour Saturday.
* Cullerton to back Giannoulias today…
State Senate President John Cullerton will endorse State Treasurer Alexi Giannoulias for U.S. Senate today.
Cullerton becomes the highest-profile elected official to endorse Giannoulias so far, though Giannoulias has a long-running friendship with President Obama.
You can read the endorsement press release by clicking here.
* Zorn goes after DuPage County State’s Attorney Joe Birkett over the Brian Dugan saga…
Ever since 1985 [when Dugan tried to confess to the Nicarico kidnap/murder], under a succession of elected state’s attorneys, DuPage has been trying various legal strategies first to discredit Dugan, then to prevent him from telling his full story in open court.
The reason? They botched the initial case. They used shabby, dubious evidence to convict two innocent men and pack them off to Death Row.
Then, when Dugan came forward with his powerfully corroborative admission, they refused to set things right and instead embarked on an infamous effort to defend their mistakes.
Now, we see vestiges of this effort in the attempt to place strict limits on what the sentencing jury will hear. Birkett accused Greenberg on Thursday of wanting to “put the State of Illinois on trial” by placing Dugan’s story into the broad context of prosecutorial and investigative missteps, “that have nothing to do with this defendant’s character or record or actions in the murder of Jeanine Nicarico.”
* Greg Blankenship: How Kirk introduces himself to downstate voters is key to his campaign
* Quinn: Death penalty freeze should stay
* Schillerstrom blasts Springfield for state’s lowered credit rating
* New Trier school board president eyes 10th District race
* Former Dist. 155 board member wants to be in Congress