SUBSCRIBE to Capitol Fax      Advertise Here      Mobile Version     Exclusive Subscriber Content     Updated Posts    Contact
To subscribe to Capitol Fax, click here.
Unions gearing up while Rauner lays the groundwork

Monday, Dec 23, 2013

* My weekly syndicated newspaper column

It’s no secret that Republican primary voters in Illinois have been almost rigidly hierarchical when it comes to choosing gubernatorial candidates. They pretty much always choose the candidate who can best demonstrate that it’s his or her “turn.”

In 1990, after eight years as secretary of state, Jim Edgar was the clear choice. Indeed, he barely had opposition. The same went for two-term Secretary of State George Ryan eight years later. In 2002, it was clearly Attorney General Jim Ryan’s turn and he bested two other high-profile candidates in the primary. In 2006, Treasurer Judy Baar Topinka beat three lesser-known opponents to win her primary race, although it wasn’t as easy.

Things weren’t as clear in 2010. Wealthy Republican contributor and former state party chairman Andy McKenna spent a fortune early on and led in most polling until near the end, when primary voters began to sour on him. They quickly turned to Sen. Kirk Dillard, a former Jim Edgar chief of staff, but then almost as quickly turned against him when McKenna unleashed ads blasting Dillard for appearing in a TV ad for Barack Obama. Sen. Bill Brady, a strong conservative who ran an underfunded but somewhat credible campaign four years earlier, ended up beating Dillard by less than 200 votes.

And that brings us to 2014, where three of the four candidates are relying mainly on the “my turn” logic to prevail. Sen. Brady’s main pitch to voters, other than his recycled 2010 rhetoric, is that he learned valuable lessons in his 2010 loss to Pat Quinn and is now the most viable choice. Sen. Dillard’s pitch is that he was a proven manager under Jim Edgar and would’ve won in 2010 had he not lost to Brady in the primary and so he’s the best choice. Treasurer Dan Rutherford’s almost singular raisson d’être is that he is the only candidate in the race who has ever won statewide.

McKenna was the second rich guy in a row to attempt to break the “my turn” cycle. Wealthy GOP contributor Ron Gidwitz ran four years earlier and lost badly. You can draw a direct line from Gidwitz to self described “outsider” Bruce Rauner, who is running a well thought-out, well-funded and highly sophisticated primary race in an attempt to reset the “my turn” system, which essentially flowed from the mighty statewide organization built by political newcomer Gov. Jim Thompson, who is now backing Dillard.

If the primary was left to its own devices, Rauner might very well walk away with this thing. None of the other candidates have any real money and none are making much of a persuasive case for their respective campaigns.

But organized labor is moving ever closer to jumping into this primary battle, sources say. The idea, as I’ve told you before, is to spend a relative few million bucks attacking Rauner in the primary rather than being forced to spend tens of millions to fend him off in the fall. His close ties to Mayor Rahm Emanuel, for instance, have been shown by polling to be a killer political issue with GOP primary voters.

Rauner’s anti-union rhetoric and his (by many) unexpectedly strong Republican primary campaign have convinced unions that they need to step up soon. Plus, some public employee unions are so hostile to Gov. Pat Quinn because of pension reform that they don’t want to give the incumbent any money or help in the fall. So, this is all about knocking off “Public Enemy Number One” as early as possible.

Rauner has spent $300,000 a week on TV ads since the beginning of November, mainly to begin the process of inoculating himself against the expected labor union advertising blitz. He’s pushed his poll numbers up and has continued to freeze out his GOP rivals.

It’s abundantly clear that none of the other Republican candidates has the money to attack Rauner. Two of the three barely have enough cash to sustain their own day-to-day operations. And Rutherford only has enough for about a month of TV ads, if that. The only way that any sort of negative message about Rauner can be effectively advertised is if somebody else takes him on.

While Rauner leads in two recent polls, he’s still an almost completely unknown quantity to voters. His numbers are, in other words, wide but not deep. Shocking voters with some revelations about his background could very well knock him out. But his campaign has seen this union attack coming for a long time and they undoubtedly have at least some counter-measures planned. He won’t go away quietly.

Subscribers know more about this pending attack. Lots more.

* And this Cook County GOP development has a lot to do with the beginning of my column. As noted above, Illinois Republicans don’t like nobody what nobody sent. It’s why Rauner has concentrated so hard on winning local party endorsements. He’s trying very hard to look like the historically acceptable “it’s my turn” candidate. But pretty much everyone has missed that angle

The Cook County Republican Party, beset by a lack of money, internal feuding and a long losing streak, has endorsed wealthy Winnetka businessman Bruce Rauner for governor in the March primary election.

But the impact of the county GOP backing, announced Saturday, is questionable. The group reported less than $8,500 in its campaign fund as of Oct. 1, and carried a $400 debt to Aaron Del Mar, the county’s GOP chairman.

Moreover, while Cook County traditionally represents about 21 percent of the Republican primary vote in Illinois, the party lacks any significant organization to be able to deliver ballots. Some Republicans indicated privately that among the group’s 50 ward and 30 suburban townships, local groups still could back their own preferred contenders.

* It’s not about that handful of votes. It’s about how Rauner is quickly building an image of party elder acceptability. He’s been endorsed by several county and township parties this year. And that’s why candidates like Sen. Kirk Dillard are trying to discredit the endorsements. From a Dillard press release…

State Senator Kirk Dillard released the following statement today regarding the Cook County Republican Party endorsement:

“Today’s endorsement is yet another sad example of Bruce Rauner buying the election. Ask yourself: why would Cook County GOP bosses support Rauner, knowing that he voted democrat, gave millions of dollars to state and national democrats, is a Rahm Emanuel insider, AND hired a convicted Blagojevich insider to win state contracts? There’s only one explanation — the Bruce Rauner money machine was at work again. Only in Illinois would the legitimate concerns of rank-and-file, grassroots republicans be dismissed so brazenly. Welcome back, pay-to-play!

Our campaign is confident that we have the support of grassroots republicans, as we did in the last election when Cook County had an open convention which I won in a straw poll.”

* Also, check this out

Maine Township committeeman Rosemary Mulligan, a former state representative, said she was personally lobbied by both Rauner and Dillard, who’s from neighboring DuPage County. She said she ultimately chose Rauner because of his close relationship with Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel; the two men are friends and worked together on Chicago school reform issues.

That’ll make some heads explode.

- Posted by Rich Miller        

  1. - Oswego Willy - Monday, Dec 23, 13 @ 9:10 am:

    Rosemary Mulligan; “You broke my heart”

    How about Shawn Murphy, Maureen Murphy’s son, siding with Rauner. Yikes!

    Being a Reagan Rule Republican doesn’t mean citing Rahm Emanuel as a “Plus” for the GOP endorsement.

    “We let a ’stranger’ in our house”.

    You either let the stranger take over and destroy your house like a parasite, or you take the stranger out.

    We now know how pathetic of an apparatus the Cook County GOP is… Given the parasite now owns our house.

    The plus is that in reality, the Cook GOP brings nothing to a campaign, and the Unions rather listen to Remo, than have a stranger take over their house, whole watching out the window, Payton Prep Clouter, Rahm’s vacation buddy, live in another house. When you have 9 houses, what is one more to buy? Right Shawn Murphy? Rosemary Mulligan?

  2. - wordslinger - Monday, Dec 23, 13 @ 9:22 am:

    –But the impact of the county GOP backing, announced Saturday, is questionable. The group reported less than $8,500 in its campaign fund as of Oct. 1, and carried a $400 debt to Aaron Del Mar, the county’s GOP chairman.–

    Geez, with that kind of dough, even Dillard or Brady could have “bought” the endorsement if Rauner hadn’t gotten the drop on them.

    Heck, if I checked the couch cushions, I might be able to buy it.

    The atrophy of the Cook County GOP over the years never fails to astound. How is it possible? It’s the third largest enclave of millionaires and big business types in the country.

    And it’s the biggest source, by far, of GOP votes in the state. Who knows how many tens of thousands of GOP votes are left on the table every election due to utter laziness?

  3. - Roadiepig - Monday, Dec 23, 13 @ 9:30 am:

    I think what Maine Township committeeman Rosemary Mulligan said makes total sense when you live outside of the Chicago metro area- there seems to be just one party in that area and it’s the people with money who set the agenda for both R’s and D’s. That a republican township committee person from the metro area would be enamored with a republican candidate for governor because that candidate has worked closely with the democratic mayor of Chicago is logical when you consider that most upstate democrats here are acting more like the other Midwestern republicans in charge of their respective states. It makes party lines blurry for all of them. Like you stated though- what the Cook county Republican Party was paid for by farmer Bruce won’t really translate into many more feet heading Into the voting booth, and in my opinion might instead even turn some more downstate republican primary voters towards one of the other candidates this March .

  4. - walkinfool - Monday, Dec 23, 13 @ 9:35 am:

    Mulligan likes making heads explode.

    She also likes those who support womens’ rights, equal rights for gays, education, and human services for the needy. That’s why the party boneheads dropped their support, despite her hard work for Republicans for many years.

    What goes around, comes around.

  5. - Samurai - Monday, Dec 23, 13 @ 9:37 am:

    ==Rosemary Mulligan, a former state representative, said … she ultimately chose Rauner because of his close relationship with Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel; the two men are friends==

    Future primary Ad against Rauhmer. Assuming money for ads can be shaken loose…


  6. - PhoenixRising - Monday, Dec 23, 13 @ 9:38 am:

    CCRP will not have a shortage of funds from here on out

  7. - A guy... - Monday, Dec 23, 13 @ 10:06 am:

    It’s battle fatigue. They want to win. To them, this guy is their best hope. They’ve seen the others before and they not only lack money, they lack energy. In a political process, lacking energy is fatal. Every time.

  8. - Easy - Monday, Dec 23, 13 @ 10:15 am:

    hahah Rosie. Even when she tries to help you, she hurts you.

  9. - child games - Monday, Dec 23, 13 @ 10:16 am:

    How about Cross not getting the endorsement or even a recommendation

  10. - overcooked - Monday, Dec 23, 13 @ 10:51 am:

    The Cook County GOP has been flashing a for sale sign since Rauner announced. An endorsement in name only because it buys no loyalty, precinct workers or influence. Why bother finding somebody to run against Joe Berrios when you can sell out to the highest bidder?

  11. - Conservative Veteran - Monday, Dec 23, 13 @ 11:00 am:

    Since Mulligan said that Rauner is a friend of Emanuel’s, that should cause almost all republican primary voters to vote for any governor candidate except Rauner.

  12. - Ghost - Monday, Dec 23, 13 @ 11:23 am:

    Rauner seems a bit Niave to me with some of his positions; primarily from lack of expericne with government.

    There is a part of me thougt that thinks he shows straights which may allow him to overcome some of his more niave positions, and may not do such a bad job after all.

    its one thing to talk about driving an 18 speed big rig based on reading about it in books, its another thing to actually do it. Overall he strikes me as a pragmatist, and with a strong dem presence in the GA, perhaps a pragmatist in the GO will not be a bad thing.

  13. - Rod - Monday, Dec 23, 13 @ 12:21 pm:

    It is all good for lucky Pat Quinn. Rauner will implode under Pat’s class war attack. In the past I have linked video of Rauner on Chicago Tonight breaking down and refusing to respond when faced with a social class attack on Rauner’s own creditability.

    For example Quinn will unleash the attack on Rauner based on his “right to work” positions. Pat will do this from a perspective of basic democratic values and not necessarily from a pro-union perspective.

    In the past on TV, Rauner has not been able to articulate a coherent defense to such an assault. The Speaker also will take particular glee in turning out the vote against Rauner who has directly gone after him. It will be payback time.

    Republicans, get ready for the beating cause it is coming.

  14. - Rich Miller - Monday, Dec 23, 13 @ 12:34 pm:

    === get ready for the beating cause it is coming===

    Y’all really are over-confident. What if Rauner jumps out of the gate with $1 million a week or more in TV ads? He can define himself and Quinn before Quinn can lay a glove on him.

  15. - Oswego Willy - Monday, Dec 23, 13 @ 1:21 pm:

    ===Y’all really are over-confident. What if Rauner jumps out of the gate with $1 million a week or more in TV ads? He can define himself and Quinn before Quinn can lay a glove on him.===

    I take him very seriously. Since before State Fair, and since. If you don’t, you will be like the “3″ still wondering what happened to all those days they had to define and marginalize, now it’s only the Unions.

    Don’t get caught up in Rauner’s wake, as his ship motors past your leisurely cruise to a loss.

  16. - Walter Mitty - Monday, Dec 23, 13 @ 1:36 pm:

    I think the other 3 are done. All signs are showing this. Rauner is attacking PQ. MJM blasted Rauner after the pension “win”… If there is no substantial PQ offensive or union offensive by mid January, I think it’s closer in the general and closer to a coin toss. I think the class warfare shtick has grown tiresome. $18 dollar watch ad’s compared to 401k for all new employees may not pass….But in general circles, red meat. The seldom watched debate will be irrelevant by then….

  17. - Ghost - Monday, Dec 23, 13 @ 3:46 pm:

    WM maybe, but Ruaner doesnt seem to get a lot of bumps for the cash he is laying out.

    To partially quote Flounder: oh boy, is this great!

Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.

* Kirk's debate comment called "racist" and "despicable"
* Aldermen behaving badly
* Exelon Caught In $1.4 Billion Tax Dodge - While Making $841 Million In Quarterly Profits
* Illinois Policy Institute claims AFSCME rejecting offers that would benefit state workers
* *** UPDATED x1 *** Durbin "has the support" to stay in Senate leadership slot
* Question of the day
* I don't think this is gonna work as planned
* More like this, please
* Rauner doesn't escape this time
* One of the best ads of 2016
* Asbestos lawyers launch high-dollar ad campaign in appellate race
* Back to the drawing board
* Proft on GOP, Trump and Madigan
* As usual, the blowhard walks it back
* *** UPDATED x1 - LIVE VIDEO *** Kirk taking page from Trump debate playbook
* SUBSCRIBERS ONLY - Supplement to today’s edition
* SUBSCRIBERS ONLY - Today's edition of Capitol Fax (use all CAPS in password)
* Yesterday's blog posts

Visit our advertisers...






Search This Blog...

Search the 98th General Assembly By Bill Number
(example: HB0001)

Search the 98th General Assembly By Keyword

* Pushbullet supports Allo messaging from PC
* Lenovo Phab 2 available today at $200, Tango-enabled Phab 2 Pro on November 1
* LG G6 to get MST capability
* Google Photos to take on Facebook’s Prisma?
* Twitter is retiring Vine
* PlayStation Vue is live on Android TV
* Google Pixel XL unboxing: This Really Blue is really nagging at us (Video)

* Unlike some, White Sox still remember 2005
* Eaton named Gold Glove Award finalist
* One possible White Sox future playing out in Toronto
* pnoles' offseason plan
* Three times the 2005 White Sox never happened on Monday
* White Sox developing promising OF prospects
* Josh Nelson's Offseason Plan


Main Menu
Pundit rankings
Subscriber Content
Blagojevich Trial
Updated Posts

October 2016
September 2016
August 2016
July 2016
June 2016
May 2016
April 2016
March 2016
February 2016
January 2016
December 2015
November 2015
October 2015
September 2015
August 2015
July 2015
June 2015
May 2015
April 2015
March 2015
February 2015
January 2015
December 2014
November 2014
October 2014
September 2014
August 2014
July 2014
June 2014
May 2014
April 2014
March 2014
February 2014
January 2014
December 2013
November 2013
October 2013
September 2013
August 2013
July 2013
June 2013
May 2013
April 2013
March 2013
February 2013
January 2013
December 2012
November 2012
October 2012
September 2012
August 2012
July 2012
June 2012
May 2012
April 2012
March 2012
February 2012
January 2012
December 2011
November 2011
October 2011
September 2011
August 2011
July 2011
June 2011
May 2011
April 2011
March 2011
February 2011
January 2011
December 2010
November 2010
October 2010
September 2010
August 2010
July 2010
June 2010
May 2010
April 2010
March 2010
February 2010
January 2010
December 2009
November 2009
October 2009
September 2009
August 2009
July 2009
June 2009
May 2009
April 2009
March 2009
February 2009
January 2009
December 2008
November 2008
October 2008
September 2008
August 2008
July 2008
June 2008
May 2008
April 2008
March 2008
February 2008
January 2008
December 2007
November 2007
October 2007
September 2007
August 2007
July 2007
June 2007
May 2007
April 2007
March 2007
February 2007
January 2007
December 2006
November 2006
October 2006
September 2006
August 2006
July 2006
June 2006
May 2006
April 2006
March 2006
February 2006
January 2006
December 2005
April 2005
March 2005
February 2005
January 2005
December 2004
November 2004
October 2004

Blog*Spot Archives
November 2005
October 2005
September 2005
August 2005
July 2005
June 2005
May 2005


RSS Feed 2.0
Comments RSS 2.0


* The Wemstroms: Illinois needs solutions that he.....
* State economic development leader pays visit - .....

* AP News Guide: Pipeline activists swept off private property
* Police evict oil pipeline protesters from private land
* Latest: More than 100 arrests as pipeline protesters moved
* Researchers see bat populations decline in Illinois
* Police evict oil pipeline protesters from private land
* Man cleared in 6-year-old's death gets innocence certificate
* Chicago aldermen blast ethics ban on face-value Cubs tickets
* Man freed from prison after 12 years when case is dismissed
* Funeral set for Oklahoma man killed in Afghanistan attack

* Bobcat hunting opponents seek permits, won't use them
* Opponents emerge against Illinois road fund ballot question
* Feds end lease with Illinois for state park, citing neglect
* Statehouse Insider: Tomorrow's a new day; in Illinois, that may not be good
* Cook County lawyer who posed as judge criminally charged
* 1,100 non-union state workers getting $3,016 bonuses
* Springfield veteran honored for volunteer work
* Central Illinois soldier killed in Afghanistan
* Rauner administration awarding more than $3 million in bonuses to non-union workers
* SIU injury-prevention program reinstated through stopgap budget

* George Lucas unveils designs for L.A.-based Museum of Narrative Art
* Kirk, Duckworth spar in first televised Senate debate
* Feds probing Express Scripts' relationships with drugmakers, specialty pharmacies
* Obama says health consumers need to shop around
* In Washington’s drug price fight, plenty of blame to go around

* Dear Abby: Daughter, 5 kids abruptly move in
* Georgia Nicols horoscopes for Oct. 28, 2016
* Metra schedules to be impacted by work on UP lines
* Electrical fire suspected as cause of Evanston blaze
* Bulls display an edge in the season-opening win over the Celtics
* Jennifer Lopez to star in NBC’s live musical ‘Bye Bye Birdie’
* Cubs are too talented not to win World Series
* Dee Snider launching new album in Chicago, rooting for the Cubs
* Multiple people shot with paintballs in Evanston
* Sweet: Clinton goes high with Michelle Obama to bury email low

* More aggressive Kirk goes after Duckworth in second debate, questions her family's heritage
* Jimmy Butler scores 24 as Bulls top Celtics 105-99 in season opener
* Putin's chaos strategy is coming back to bite him
* Bulls' Dwyane Wade comes home, opens season with great fanfare
* Nights to remember on deck for Cubs fans this weekend at Wrigley Field
* Jury acquits Ammon and Ryan Bundy, five others, in Oregon standoff
* Plane carrying Mike Pence slides off LaGuardia runway in NYC; no one injured
* Police fire pepper spray, bean bags as they oust oil pipeline protesters in North Dakota
* Dwyane Wade's regular-season debut with Bulls ends in 105-99 win over Celtics
* Jimmy Butler welcomes Dwyane Wade to Bulls with open arms

The widget AQL4JYGHIY powered by Feed Informer does not exist.

* Our View: U.S. Rep. Rodney Davis deserves third term
* John Bouman: We all suffer from Illinois' budget crisis
* Eugene Robinson: Hillary Clinton is blazing a momentous trail
* George Will: Republican Party needs to revert to nominating Republicans
* Bernard Schoenburg: 9 on Sangamon County Board opt out of pension system
* Bobcat hunting opponents seek permits, won't use them
* Opponents emerge against Illinois road fund ballot question
* Our Opinion: LaHood endorsed in 18th Congressional District
* Leroy Jordan: Race Riot site must be preserved, taught to students
* E.J. Dionne: Trump is not a GOP aberration

* PODCAST: Mark Shelden, Republican candidate for Champaign County Recorder
* PODCAST: Matt Duco, Democratic candidate for Champaign County Recorder
* WHERE THEY STAND: energy and the environment
* SJ-O, Schlarman lead volleyball winners
* Ten suggestions for first Illini Hall of Fame class
* Bob Asmussen's Huddle Up (Week 9, 2016)
* Fire reported in Urbana
* Trio of candidates clash in 12th Congressional debate
* Kirk, Duckworth spar in first televised Senate debate
* Big Ten football glance: Spartans, Wolverines renew rivalry

* Girls volleyball: Fremd tops Hersey again
* Wade settles on fashion-oriented World Series wager
* Wade from long range keys Chicago Bulls' opening-night win
* Cubs fired up as World Series finally returns to Wrigley Field
* Jury awards more than $70M to woman in baby powder lawsuit

* House lawmakers overcome hurdle on key tra...
* Rodney Davis talks funding with Bloomingto...
* The agency that fought Illiana gets a new ...
* Rep. Dold takes educational cruise down Ch...
* Lawmakers decry high turnover rate of VA h...
* CBD Oil, and politics
* Simon considering state Senate bid
* Killer Congressman Tom MacArthur trying to...
* Shutdown? State may not notice
* Rep. Bob Dold

* Durbin visits 'extraordinary' Lake County ......

* Kirk, Duckworth participate in first telev......
* Kirk, Duckworth spar in first televised Se......
* More aggressive Kirk goes after Duckworth ......
* Kirk, Duckworth participate in first telev......
* Republican Sen. Mark Steven Kirk questions......

* Chicago Groups Skeptical Of CPS Borrowing Plan For School Construction
* Certain Cook County Suburbs Want To Opt Out Of $13 Minimum Wage
* Matter of ethics? Or ugly aldermen taking space from Hollywood glitter
* Ex-Illinois Congressman Says He Will Grab His Musket If Trump Loses
* Chicago Protesters Press Walmart To Stop Selling Trump Merchandise
* Really Kirk....
* Gooseberry Playlot Nears Completion On Malden
* Riviera Lofts Ready To Lease At Lawrence & Broadway
* Thorner: Mark Levin's case for an Article V Convention challenged
* Former IL Congressman threatens to grab musket if Trump loses

* Don’t be a Ghoul, Don’t Drink and Drive - Police throughout Illinois step up patrols for Halloween weekend
* Honoring Illinois' Fallen - United States and State flags at half-staff from Sunrise, Saturday, October 29, 2016 until Sunset, Monday, October 31, 2016.
* 25th Annual HIV/STD Conference - Celebrating Success, Shaping the Future - Sexually Transmitted Diseases increase while HIV decreases
* Workers’ Comp Commission Updates Technology at No Cost to Taxpayer - Another step in Rauner Administration’s modernization of state government
* Governor’s Children’s Cabinet Makes Lead Poisoning Prevention A Priority - October 23-30, 2016 - National Lead Poisoning Prevention Week

      Hosted by MCS SUBSCRIBE to Capitol Fax Advertise Here Mobile Version Contact Rich Miller