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Vallas react

Saturday, Nov 9, 2013

[Comments now open.]

* Paul Vallas’ residency issue is looked at by the Tribune

Jack Dorgan, the state Republican chairman, said the GOP will review whether a residency issue exists for Vallas in the normal course of checking petitions. “Obviously it’s an issue with someone who hasn’t lived in the state for a long time,” he said.

Burt Odelson, a veteran election-law attorney who represents the Quinn campaign, said Vallas has significantly more ways to prove he did not give up his Illinois residency than did Rahm Emanuel, who in his successful bid for Chicago mayor survived a residency challenge.

* Professional opinion reaction to Gov. Pat Quinn’s choice of Vallas as a running mate…

* Rich Miller Sun-Times: Vallas won’t just be second fiddle to Quinn

    And while the four Republican candidates for governor mostly settled on unknowns with little political experience but plenty of “diversity” (an Asian-American man and three women, one of whom is a Latina and one with an Hispanic surname), Quinn set aside demographic and immediate political considerations and chose someone who clearly is up to the task of taking the reins of government if something should happen to him. And shouldn’t that be a governor’s first consideration?

    But Vallas’ stature and experience come with a very steep price. Vallas is a forceful, polarizing public figure. He’s supremely charming but temperamental to the point of being obnoxious and always confident he’s the smartest guy in the room.

    Simon sat quietly in the back seat while Quinn drove the car, jumping out the door when it suited her purposes but silently and politely.

    If the past is any guide, Vallas constantly will be leaning over the front seat trying to yank the steering wheel out of Quinn’s hands. Vallas could wind up hurting Quinn, both in the campaign and after the governing resumes.

    I don’t see how Quinn is going to keep Vallas on a short leash when nobody has ever managed to do such a thing before in his life.

* Carol Marin: Vallas is a gutsy choice by Quinn

    The governor made a bold and ballsy choice by picking Paul Vallas as his lieutenant governor running mate for 2014. And nobody knows that better than Illinois Republicans.

    Like, for instance, GOP candidate Bruce Rauner who, according to a highly informed source, considered recruiting Vallas to be his lieutenant governor. And sought Vallas’ endorsement. […]

    [But] Vallas has never played a very good second banana.

* John Kass: Vallas is no second banana

    What surprises me is that Rauner didn’t get Vallas on his side. Vallas had soured on the Democrats after the 2002 campaign, and even considered running as a Republican for the Cook County Board. The two of them — with their knowledge of budgets and finance — would have been formidable. […]

    “Yes, Paul has a big personality,” said a source close to Quinn. “We all know that. But Gov. Quinn has a big personality too. They both have their hearts out there. No question there are going to be bumps in the road along the way. But the bottom line is that they get results, and they’re a great team.”

    Well, they’re a great lineup for now. Whether they’re a great team won’t be determined until later in the campaign, after they’ve held joint news conferences and shared microphones. It’s a long time until March.

* Chicago Tribune editorial board: Quinn-Vallas ticket: This just got interesting

    This was a gutsy call for Quinn, who was immediately rapped for his choice by the Chicago Teachers Union.

    Count us among those who very much like Vallas’ style and substance. He’s impatient with bloated, lethargic bureaucracy. You have to wonder how different things would be had Vallas won the 2002 Democratic primary for governor instead of Rod Blagojevich. Vallas would not have gone along quietly as the General Assembly built its dynasty of debt. […]

    [But] It’s difficult to envision Vallas as second-in-command of anything. The lieutenant governor is usually grateful for scraps thrown by the governor, and there are usually few of them.

* From a CTU press release

Statement by Chicago Teachers Union President Karen GJ Lewis, NBCT on the selection of Paul Vallas as Governor Quinn’s running mate:

“The Chicago Teachers Union has supported Governor Quinn in the past because of his commitment to grassroots organizing, publicly funded public education, and collective bargaining. For these reasons we are concerned about his choice of Paul Vallas as a running mate. His choice takes us in the wrong direction for public education in Chicago and Illinois.

“While he was CEO of the Chicago Public Schools, Vallas pioneered the corporate driven education model in our city. His policies continue to devastate our schools system, which recently suffered 50 school closures, deep, and painful school budget cuts, and the loss of thousands of experienced school staff are key tenets of the Vallas model.

“Vallas ushered in an era of massive expansion of standardized testing; the privatization of public schools through outsourcing and charter school expansion; and the devastating policy of school turnarounds, which resulted in the firing of scores of black and veteran teachers.

“In a 2010 interview with John Merrow on PBS, Paul Vallas appallingly stated that he did not see any downside to charter school proliferation, believed that there was not enough faculty turnover in education, and did not see a need for collective bargaining.

“Just this week in Bridgeport, CT, the school board election results were viewed as a referendum on Vallas’ tenure as an unaccredited district administrator.

“In consideration of this list of concerns, we hope that Vallas will move to support proposals for an elected representative school board in Chicago, and also denounce privatization schemes that have done nothing to increase academic achievement or address the needs of students who need the most in Chicago, Philadelphia, and New Orleans.”

- Posted by Rich Miller        


25 Comments
  1. - anon - Tuesday, Nov 12, 13 @ 9:19 am:

    I think the governor made a mistake here. First, he should have chosen an African American. The election will be won by driving up turnout in core constituencies. The governor should have no greater core constituency than the African American community. I think his support there has been shaken by a variety of things, mostly Medicaid reform. He could have shored that up with a strong African American running mate. Second, as you pointed out in your column, Vallas is no second fiddle. If Quinn thinks he gave Blago a hard time when he was LG, wait until he sees what Vallas will do to him. Vallas will never understand that he is number 2, and he will always step on the governor’s message. We have taken a governor who lacks discipline, and added message chaos. I dont support this move, but i still support this governor.


  2. - John Bambenek - Tuesday, Nov 12, 13 @ 9:22 am:

    It is assured that at a minimum, there is going to be months of litigation… he was fighting for his job in Bridgeport just weeks ago (how’s that for intent?)…

    Why adopt this liability?


  3. - Frank - Tuesday, Nov 12, 13 @ 9:23 am:

    Any decent LG/VP pick should produce a day or two of good coverage for the guy at the top of the ticket — and this has. But, come Election Day, it will be next to meaningless.


  4. - Dan - Tuesday, Nov 12, 13 @ 9:23 am:

    I would be more comfortable if Vallas was at the top of the ticket.


  5. - Knome Sane - Tuesday, Nov 12, 13 @ 9:29 am:

    I think picking Vallas was a straight money play for Quinn that will backfire. Stephanie Neely, Kwame Raoul, Will Burns do not have access to “real” money, the kind of money Quinn will need to counter Rauner’s dough (yes, I think Rauner will be the nominee). But Quinn will soon realize that the Greek community that stood steadfast with Vallas in 2002 will not open their checkbooks for the fifth prize in state government.


  6. - Small Town Liberal - Tuesday, Nov 12, 13 @ 9:32 am:

    - straight money play -

    Yeah, Vallas was a money machine back in 2002. I think he had a whole $400k.

    Where do you come up with this stuff?


  7. - Oswego Willy - Tuesday, Nov 12, 13 @ 9:33 am:

    A huge factor for Quinn is the absolute FACT that Paul Vallas can be Governor if the need arises, and Pat Quinn is living proof that a Lt. Governor better be ready to do just that.

    Plus, Paul Vallas vs. “8 Precint” or “Slip and Sue” or “Dave Kim”…Vallas is going to really make that contrast of the #1s “First Decision” had nothing to do with think what would be best for Illinois, and 3 of the GOP candidates failed, and failed miserably, and Vallas will highlight that big time.

    LG is suppose to be qualified to BE Governor, and that first “decision” made by those 3 GOP Candidates puts on the table;

    “If that is ‘X’ looking out for Illinois in choosing ‘Y’, I would hate to see other important decisions made by ‘X’ as Governor”

    They all got to showcase their leadership with this decision, choosing, not inheriting a LG by vote.

    Vallas makes those 3 look even more pathetic choices.


  8. - Chavez-respecting Obamist - Tuesday, Nov 12, 13 @ 9:41 am:

    Paul Vallas=Joe Biden. Someone who could step up if needed, and better yet, Mr. Loose Cannon who can say what Quinn wants out there but doesn’t want to say himself.


  9. - Chi - Tuesday, Nov 12, 13 @ 9:52 am:

    Can Quinn trust Vallas not to drop out? Quinn just handed Vallas a lot of power; Vallas can withdraw from the race any time he wants, and I think Vallas withdrawing would be more detrimental to Quinn than any of the other LG candidates leaving their respective ticket.


  10. - wordslinger - Tuesday, Nov 12, 13 @ 9:55 am:

    I still think there’s a chance this will fall through, but that would have to happen soon.

    Does Vallas truly believe Quinn will give him real power? He must understand any authority would be derivative and could be taken away on a whim. At it’s core, it’s a powerless, do-nothing office.

    Does Quinn really think Vallas will toe the line and be a team player when they disagree?

    It was one thing to have the two officials disagree when they were elected separately. It’s another to have your chosen running mate stepping on your message in public.

    Do either of these guys really see a positive outcome from this relationship?


  11. - Snucka - Tuesday, Nov 12, 13 @ 9:56 am:

    As I’ve mentioned in the past, the selection of a Lieutenant Governor candidate gives us some new insight into the candidates for Governor. In the case of a President/VP pick, it is the first “big” decision that the presidential candidate makes on a national stage. That doesn’t come into play as much here, because we have seen Quinn make decisions over the past five years as governor. He chose Sheila Simon last time, which was a questionable move at best, but this time he has chosen a candidate with extensive public policy experience and first-rate retail political skills. Vallas, for those reasons and more, will be ready to run the state should Quinn be incapacitated. As OW pointed out, this actually IS the first big decision we’ve seen from the GOP candidates and none of them (except maybe Tracy?) is nearly as qualified as Vallas.

    As there is no primary, the main issue to look at is how Quinn/Vallas will match up against the other possible tickets. On November 12, 2013, this might seem like a crazy selection. He could have “fired up” the Democratic base by picking an African-American or a Latino (not many Latinos come to mind, to be honest). However, he has a full year to wage a campaign that will ensure that those communities come out in strong support of his ticket. The selection of a LG candidate is small potatoes compared to other “goodies” that a Governor has to motivate his base constituencies and their elected officials — all of which Quinn is expert at doling out.

    The one issue that bothers me a bit about the pick is the residency question. I’m sure that Quinn’s legal team has given him pretty solid assurances on that score, but it’s still a risk that could have been avoided by picking someone else. Very few people are going to vote for or against the LG candidate in this race, so I think that taking any unnecessary risk in that vein is not wise. Assuming that Vallas stays on the ballot and there is not a drawn-out residency challenge, this pick keeps Quinn in the driver’s seat in terms of the General Election.


  12. - CircularFiringSquad - Tuesday, Nov 12, 13 @ 10:01 am:

    The Vallas pick really closes down all the GOPie picks.
    Paul should role out the Kustra Lite Gov model —where he got control of the IBHE, etc. and use that as his job description. PQ is likely to agree and the good times will roll.
    Meanwhile can we have QOTD on Commando MakeItUp’s request for the GOPies to “go moderate”? Very funny as the volume on the hate speech gets louder every day


  13. - DuPage - Tuesday, Nov 12, 13 @ 10:06 am:

    Every LG campaign has ALWAYS included “will expand my role” and “will be active in running the state”, etc., etc.. Never really happens. Shows up in a parade, ribbon cuttings, and other ceremonial events. The main part of the job is to take over in case something happens to the governor. The LG has legal power and authority to do what else?


  14. - Bill - Tuesday, Nov 12, 13 @ 10:06 am:

    Vallas is a failure and a loser. He’s left under a dark cloud everywhere he has worked. Check out the city’s bond situation now that Vallas masterminded decades ago. To say that he is capable of running the state is ludicrous unless you consider who is “running” it now. He is the “smartest person in the room” only in his own mind or when he is the only one in the room.


  15. - A guy... - Tuesday, Nov 12, 13 @ 10:26 am:

    It tells me that PQ really is devoted to Pension Reform. No conflicting messages on this. It’s part of a pattern of doing things to show how serious he is. Pandering or not, it’s consistent.


  16. - Toure's Latte - Tuesday, Nov 12, 13 @ 10:34 am:

    An interesting choice given Vallas’ ed cred. The CTU might be a little nervous. Vallas, lacking funds and resources, kick-started NOLA’s destroyed school system by bringing in private enterprise/charter schools.


  17. - Small Town Liberal - Tuesday, Nov 12, 13 @ 10:39 am:

    - or when he is the only one in the room. -

    At least he didn’t end up the only one in a jail cell like your guy, Bill.


  18. - Mighty M. Mouse - Tuesday, Nov 12, 13 @ 10:54 am:

    Hey Word, did you see PQ at that high school basketball game last weekend so you could ask him why he picked Vallas for lite Gov?


  19. - wordslinger - Tuesday, Nov 12, 13 @ 10:55 am:

    Football game. No, I didn’t. Brutal loss.


  20. - Robert the Bruce - Tuesday, Nov 12, 13 @ 11:25 am:

    ==Does Quinn really think Vallas will toe the line and be a team player when they disagree?==
    I can’t imagine Quinn is that stupid to expect this after the election. But he probably does expect Vallas to toe the line during the campaign, and I wonder if Vallas can.

    ==Do either of these guys really see a positive outcome from this relationship?==
    Quinn might see Vallas as help with (1) fundraising, (2)independent voters, and (3) neutralizing Rauner’s approach to schools/unions, while Vallas might see this simply as a stepping stone for another future run for higher office (get elected Lt Gov, then assert enough independence by disagreeing with Quinn on some issues)


  21. - Robert the Bruce - Tuesday, Nov 12, 13 @ 11:43 am:

    The risk I see in the Vallas pick is that it opens the door to losing left wing votes. I can see why pro-labor groups might consider Vallas a slap in the face.

    Quinn beat Brady by 0.8% in 2010, and the Green Party won 2.7% of the votes in that election. If the Green Party or another left wing candidate could steal just another couple percent and run on a pro-labor platform, they might be able to pull a Nader on Quinn.


  22. - Rod - Tuesday, Nov 12, 13 @ 11:50 am:

    I think its pretty simple if you have no threat on your left flank because no one over there will vote for Rauner then you only political concern is with your right flank. Vallas under cuts the school choice crowd with his long standing support for charter schools and evens the playing field with Rauner in that area.

    Fiscally to claim Vallas was incompetent because years after Mayor Daley moves him out to CPS the City of Chicago is a fiscal basket case is really stretching things. Something very big happened in 2008, its called the great recession. Mayor Daley was not able to deal with the huge decline in revenue the City experienced and tried to balance the books by selling off assets like the parking meters. Vallas had zero to do with those decisions.

    Paul is a smart guy and that will be a problem because Governor Quinn sometimes makes goofy decisions that are fiscally questionable. The best example was the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees deal. I have little doubt Vallas would have opposed the trade offs involved in that deal.

    Jerry Stermer’s role in relation to fiscal issues far exceeds his knowledge base coming out of Voices for Illinois Children or his background in early childhood education policy. I can foresee real problems in keeping those two under the same big tent. But those issues can be dealt with down the road once Bruce Rauner is crushed.


  23. - Ghost - Tuesday, Nov 12, 13 @ 12:30 pm:

    Quinn’s campaign style has not changed, its core philosophy has been the same since the begining…

    “Go big or go home…”

    he went big, again…. next he will cut lawmaker pay….


  24. - Amalia - Tuesday, Nov 12, 13 @ 2:41 pm:

    as I thought, the editorial pages love this pick. and with good reason…..Vallas is prepared to be Governor in case of a change at the top. just think of Vallas heading up some fiscal policy or education committee and we know that we have increased the adult in the room quotient dramatically. smart guy, smart choice.


  25. - Just The Way It Is One - Tuesday, Nov 12, 13 @ 3:45 pm:

    Vallas mainly took the realistic opportunity for this job opening for one, overriding reason–once Pat Quinn is gone, even if it’s in a few years, and despite any of Lisa Madigan’s future aspirations–he perceives that he will either have a MUCH stronger shot at winning the GOVernor’s Office again (what he wanted 11 years ago in the 1ST place after all) or something else higher, like U.S. Senator, if and when Dick Durbin departs from Washington….

    Oh, sure, if they get in, he’ll tackle some one and/or another big issues while Lite Gov., obviously more than likely related to his background, and try to say that’s why he’s REALLY there, but, in the end, it’s ultimately about putting himself in a much stronger position–particularly when it’s “HANDED to you on a Silver Platter,” as the old saying goes–to gain easier access to amassing a tremendous amount of MORE POWER (so when it comes to governance on a huge scale, he could ultimately/finally have it, at least mostly for once, his own way)…!


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