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Oberweis is wintering in Florida

Tuesday, Mar 11, 2014

* Mary Ann Ahern caught up with Republican US Senate candidate Jim Oberweis in Florida

NBC 5 has learned that Oberweis flew out of Illinois Saturday, and is at his million-dollar Bonita Beach Florida condo until the end of the week.

When reached by phone, Oberweis would not confirm his whereabouts, and when he was repeatedly asked whether he’s in Illinois, he replied, “I think you’ve figured out by now that I’m not answering that question.”

Oberweis did say he’s “really focused on November,” where he hopes to battle incumbent Democratic U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin.

He won’t be back until Friday, Ahern reports.

* Here’s the audio of the TV story

- Posted by Rich Miller        

  1. - Formerly Known As... - Tuesday, Mar 11, 14 @ 4:45 pm:

    He and Vallas can share a cab home from the airport when they both arrive in Illinois.

  2. - Oswego Willy - Tuesday, Mar 11, 14 @ 4:48 pm:

    “(Mrs. Oberweis) can’t even vote for him.” lol!

    I am betting Bruce Rauner can’t wait for Oberweis to top the ticket. Less than 5 days out, and in Florida???

    What a 1%er Dope.

    @FakeTomCross - hope Jim Oberweis finds time for golf in FL. Oberweis works so hard, he deserves this time off. #WifeyTime #LetThemEatCake #MockVolunteers

  3. - Chavez-respecting Obamist - Tuesday, Mar 11, 14 @ 4:49 pm:

    That’s who I want representing me in the Senate. Someone who bails just because there’s more snow on the way and he can.

  4. - Vinny - Tuesday, Mar 11, 14 @ 4:53 pm:

    I’d say this is another case of Mary Ann Ahern making a big stink about pretty much nothing.

  5. - regular democrat - Tuesday, Mar 11, 14 @ 4:55 pm:

    Im with you Vinny Who really cares it his decision.

  6. - wordslinger - Tuesday, Mar 11, 14 @ 4:56 pm:

    Dude’s awfully confident of a primary victory.

    To be fair, Bonita is Chicago South, so it’s kind of like he’s still here. The whole Gulf Coast from Ft. Myers to Naples is crawling with Illinois snowbirds.

  7. - Oswego Willy - Tuesday, Mar 11, 14 @ 4:56 pm:

    “Oberweis/Rauner… Let Illinois eat cake, we’re going to Disney World!”

    “Oberweis/Rauner… We care about you, we just care about ourselves and money-stuff more. Get over it.”

    “Oberweis/Rauner… I’ll see your luxury condo, and raise you a Florida compound and Montana ranch!”

    “Oberweis/Rauner… Do we really have to be Illinois citizens, can’t we just buy some people off to say they saw us?”

    “Oberweis/Rauner… We can’t come to the campaign trail right now, we are playing Polo at the Polo Club. Leave a message with our Housekeepers…”

    “Oberweis/Rauner… We care about people, but only when Nary Ann Ahern is looking…”

  8. - Oswego Willy - Tuesday, Mar 11, 14 @ 4:58 pm:

    “Oberweis/Rauner… Elections are a major distraction for us. ‘Don’t you people know who we are?’…”

  9. - Oswego Willy - Tuesday, Mar 11, 14 @ 5:00 pm:

    “Oberweis/ Rauner…’Bruce said he forgot to lock the service entrance at the Florida Compound, so, off I went.”

  10. - Oswego Willy - Tuesday, Mar 11, 14 @ 5:12 pm:

    “Oberweis/Rauner… Hey, ‘We’ were collecting absentee ballots. No, no, the ‘We’ is a ‘Royal We’, it’s just Jim in Florida this time.”

  11. - Oswego Willy - Tuesday, Mar 11, 14 @ 5:14 pm:

    “Oberweis/Rauner… We can outsource Illinois Government to Florida.”

  12. - Oswego Willy - Tuesday, Mar 11, 14 @ 5:20 pm:

    Why not day you are in Florida?

    Aren’t you proud, or are you embarrassed?

  13. - wordslinger - Tuesday, Mar 11, 14 @ 5:21 pm:

    –When reached by phone, Oberweis would not confirm his whereabouts, and when he was repeatedly asked whether he’s in Illinois, he replied, “I think you’ve figured out by now that I’m not answering that question.–

    What’s the point of being evasive? It just makes you look sneaky and silly.

    “I’m in Florida, gearing up for the final primary push.”

    What’s so hard about that? No story in that.

  14. - Oswego Willy - Tuesday, Mar 11, 14 @ 5:24 pm:

    ===What’s the point of being evasive? It just makes you look sneaky and silly.===

    An Oberweis and Rauner calling card.

    Bruce better get use to being married to Slytherin Oberweis, like Sharron Angle in Nevada.

    The GOP Governor won, but the two 1%ers have more in common than not.

  15. - Upon Further Review - Tuesday, Mar 11, 14 @ 5:24 pm:

    What’s the big deal? Rahm is in Chicago, what?, two weeks per month? He’s fundraising in Texas now, but he feels our pain.

  16. - Oswego Willy - Tuesday, Mar 11, 14 @ 5:29 pm:

    ===What’s the big deal?===

    “A candidate in next Tuesday’s primary election is spending the week in Florida.” Ward Room.

    Perception is everything, black helicopters over Soldier Field notwithstanding.

  17. - Confused - Tuesday, Mar 11, 14 @ 5:30 pm:

    If he wasn’t going to answer questions why did he take the call?

  18. - votecounter - Tuesday, Mar 11, 14 @ 5:31 pm:

    If MS Ahern was a good reporter she would look up Mrs. Oberweis Birthday!
    Oswego is it Mrs Rauners Birthday too?
    Word- How about “Leave me alone Can I spend my wifes birthday with her without some jerk bringing her into this?”
    What happened to leave the family out of it? Is Mrs Durbin going to get the same treatment?

  19. - PoolGuy - Tuesday, Mar 11, 14 @ 5:35 pm:

    well that was dumb. now he has to stay out of the sun and not get a tan to keep covering his tracks. might as well stayed here, its 72 today.

  20. - Oswego Willy - Tuesday, Mar 11, 14 @ 5:48 pm:

    Ahern: Why are you in Florida?

    Oberweis: I am in Florida to watch the Cubs and Sox Spring Training, for Illinois Business.

    Ahern: Both teams are in Arizona.

    Oberweis: Can you hold? Thanks…

  21. - Oswego Willy - Tuesday, Mar 11, 14 @ 5:55 pm:

    Ahern: Why are you in Florida?

    Oberweis: I got my cruise control stuck at 70 on the Interstate, and when I got it to stop, I was magically at my Condo…

  22. - Oswego Willy - Tuesday, Mar 11, 14 @ 5:57 pm:

    Ahern: Why are you in Florida.

    Oberweis: Two words; parking tickets.

  23. - Oswego Willy - Tuesday, Mar 11, 14 @ 6:00 pm:

    Ahern: Why are you in Florida?

    Oberweis: With clocks going forward on Sunday, I went to Florida to not lose that extra hour.

    Ahern: Florida is 1 hour ahead of Illinois, in realty, you list two hours.

    Oberweis: Can I put you on hold… again… real quick? Thanks.

  24. - Jimmy - Tuesday, Mar 11, 14 @ 6:04 pm:

    Durbin: (To the tune of the Beach Boys California Girls) I wish they all could be like Oberweis…

  25. - Oswego Willy - Tuesday, Mar 11, 14 @ 6:16 pm:

    Ahern: Why are you in Florida?

    Oberweis: I ran out of oranges. If you can think of a closer place that has oranges in …”Illinois”…I am all ears.

    Ahern: You have heard of Grocery Stores?

    Oberweis: (muffles phone - Pause) … I heard of these places. We have those in Illinois? (Phone in struggle…)

    New Voice: Can you hold for Mr. Oberweis, he is not feeling well. Hold please…

    (Phone disconnects)

  26. - sloman2001 - Tuesday, Mar 11, 14 @ 6:22 pm:

    This is hardly a news story. Do you complain when Obama campaigns while Russia invades Ukraine??? Geesshh!

  27. - wordslinger - Tuesday, Mar 11, 14 @ 6:29 pm:

    –This is hardly a news story.–

    Being evasive made it a story.

    If he would have said, “I’m in Florida, preparing for the final primary push,” it never would have aired. The squirminess made it a story.

    For a guy who’s been running for statewide office forever, he’s never really developed any skills at handling the media.

  28. - Oswego Willy - Tuesday, Mar 11, 14 @ 6:29 pm:

    Ahern: Hello?

    Oberweis: Hello? Is this the yacht club? Hello?

    Ahern: Hello. Senator Oberweis, this is Mary Ann Ahern…

    Oberweis: Mary Ann Ahern? You work at the yacht club?

    Ahern: No, Senator, this is Mary Ann Ahern, NBC5 Chicago…um, Senator Oberweis…?

    Oberweis: (Tries to disguise voice) You have the wrong number.

    Ahern: Oh. Sorry. See you back after your vacation, Senator Oberweis.

    Oberweis: (Oberweis in his voice) thanks, see you soon. Ah… Dang it!

    (Dial tone)

  29. - sloman2001 - Tuesday, Mar 11, 14 @ 6:32 pm:

    –This is hardly a news story.–

    Being evasive made it a story.

    All I can say, is if you like your health care plan, you can keep your health care plan. Talk about evasive…..

  30. - A Citizen - Tuesday, Mar 11, 14 @ 6:41 pm:

    An Oberweis in Fl is worth more than a Durbin in DC.

  31. - wordslinger - Tuesday, Mar 11, 14 @ 6:47 pm:

    Sloman, guys like you who view everything through a prism of Obama antipathy fascinate me.

    It’s Pavlovian, a conditioned response.

    You’re going to miss him when he’s gone.

  32. - A Citizen - Tuesday, Mar 11, 14 @ 7:09 pm:

    Sorta like you miss Bush? And is Pavlov running for gov too? How do you find these things out?

  33. - Precinct Captain - Tuesday, Mar 11, 14 @ 7:12 pm:

    ==- wordslinger - Tuesday, Mar 11, 14 @ 5:21 pm:==

    He could easily say there is a fundraiser or visiting family or anything people infinitely would accept as credible, but being evasive does make him look silly as you said Word.

  34. - Oswego Willy - Tuesday, Mar 11, 14 @ 7:13 pm:

    The hypocrisy of Slytherin Republicans;

    Instead of wanting “better”, it is apologist rhetoric.

    “Oh yeah, well, they do it!”

    lol, pathetic way to push that Slytherin Oberweis is… better.

  35. - Louis Howe - Tuesday, Mar 11, 14 @ 7:16 pm:

    The uber-elite no longer need to campaign. Run TV and direct mail Ads then spend critical days before the election stretched out on a Florida beach. Yeah, they want the office for good reasons.

  36. - Capo - Tuesday, Mar 11, 14 @ 7:26 pm:

    Surprised he has a condo in Bonita Beach. The true 1% have a home in the Port Royal neighborhood in Naples.

  37. - Siriusly - Tuesday, Mar 11, 14 @ 7:27 pm:

    I don’t care if he went to Mexico. The dude needs some message and media training. What a loser!!!

  38. - Scott Fawell's Cellmate - Tuesday, Mar 11, 14 @ 7:32 pm:

    The AP just posted a story about the “gaffe prone” Oberweis:

    Chris Robling and other GOP insiders say he’s learned his lesson:

    “I believe that Jim Oberweis is 15 or 20 times the campaigner he was (in his earlier races),” Robling said.

    Sorry, Chris. Oberweis 4.0 still has the bugs and system errors of earlier versions. Doesn’t look like it can ever scale up to a functioning system.

  39. - wordslinger - Tuesday, Mar 11, 14 @ 7:40 pm:

    –Sorta like you miss Bush? –

    Which Bush?

    I spent a lot of time with HW as a kid reporter when he was running for president. Liked him a lot. Voted for him. Thought he was a good president with some bad luck on the economic cycle. Think he has been an outstanding ex-president. And I will miss him when he’s gone because he’s a good man and a great patriot.

    Knew W a little bit back when the old man was running and he’s a swell guy. I think he was a little over his skis as president. He could be inexplicably incurious and willingly manipulated by strong, stupid people.

    Like every American president, he had to make some hard choices, none of which were necessarily “good.” But he’s also a good man and great patriot and I will miss him when he’s gone.

    Rather than focus on the personalities of presidents, the American people should grow up and live up to our self-image and insist that we stop dropping bombs out of the sky on defenseless civilians in order to get our way in the world.

    We do that way too much.

  40. - Smoggie - Tuesday, Mar 11, 14 @ 7:53 pm:

    Florida? Is it even warm in Florida?

    To me, the biggest story here is that a rich guy goes to a pretty average place for a vacation.

    I mean, I would expect a guy with that much cash to head to some place like some of the out islands of the Bahamas, or maybe Nevis or St. Barth or someplace. I hear Jost Van Dyke is beautiful this time of year, as is Martinique.

    He chose a place in Florida over a place off shore?

    If he makes that decision, would you really trust him as Senator?

  41. - 47th Ward - Tuesday, Mar 11, 14 @ 7:57 pm:

    Poor Doug Truax is going to have to shovel his driveway tomorrow before he can go hit some Metra stations or drive himself to a senior bingo before dinner at some county chairman’s meet the candidates night. He’s probably carrying xerox end copies of the Tribune endorsement too.

    Illinois Republicans deserve another decade in the wilderness.

  42. - Pot calling kettle - Tuesday, Mar 11, 14 @ 8:00 pm:

    It’s a story because at the top of the Republican ticket we will have two wealthy white men who take their privileged for granted; the world exists for them. It comes out in their comments and actions. Rauner has a decent chance at being governor, but his Achilles’ Heal will be this kind of stuff. As OW is pointing out, having Oberweis on the ticket with is likely to reinforce that negative.

  43. - VanillaMan - Tuesday, Mar 11, 14 @ 8:20 pm:

    It is smart for Oberweis not to show his face.

    Just run the commercials.

    Don’t say a word!

  44. - Oh Come On! - Tuesday, Mar 11, 14 @ 8:21 pm:

    @Pot Calling Kettle:

    Where is President Obama spending his time? Key Largo, Florida at an exclusive golf club.

    Is he living a life of privilege too?

  45. - Bill White - Tuesday, Mar 11, 14 @ 8:21 pm:

    === Illinois Republicans deserve another decade in the wilderness. ===

    I predict that is what will happen. Maybe longer.

  46. - Oswego Willy - Tuesday, Mar 11, 14 @ 8:35 pm:

    - VanillaMan -,

    Man, that was good. Well done!

  47. - wordslinger - Tuesday, Mar 11, 14 @ 8:37 pm:

    –The uber-elite no longer need to campaign.–

    I haven’t noticed that the Oberweis campaign model is a winner.

    –Poor Doug Truax is going to have to shovel his driveway tomorrow–

    Can you believe that stuff? I made a fortune in 78 and 79 driving a towtruck/plow, but there ain’t no money in this winter for me. Enough already.

  48. - Oneman - Tuesday, Mar 11, 14 @ 9:46 pm:

    I haven’t noticed that the Oberweis campaign model is a winner.

    True that.

  49. - Upon Further Review - Tuesday, Mar 11, 14 @ 10:48 pm:

    @Vanilla Man:

    Disappearing has worked from many candidates, the most relevant and recent Illinois example was former U.S. Representative Sam Young. The only time that the Republican beat Abner Mikvah was when the campaign put him out of the district for much of the race. It helped keep him from making verbal gaffes in what was once a highly competitive district.

  50. - Jon Zahm - Wednesday, Mar 12, 14 @ 12:32 am:

    After Truax gets his 35% maybe he can run for a seat on a school board or township board. He had 6 months running virtually by himself for the office and the only bump he made was in consultant Dan Curry’s wallet. Now they are whining while Oberweis is winning.

  51. - William j Kelly - Wednesday, Mar 12, 14 @ 6:34 am:

    You really couldn’t make this stuff up! Seriously! If I were an evil democrat strategist and I wanted to make the Republican Party detestable to even the most diehard of republicans I couldn’t do a better job than the Illinois Republican Party has already done! Situation HOPLESS!!!!!

  52. - funny boy - Wednesday, Mar 12, 14 @ 6:45 am:

    Yep the that was probably the best campaign strategy his handlers had - send him out of town so he can’t do or say anything stupid. But good ole Obbie found a way to even screw that up. Next time send him somewhere with no cell reception. I really do feel sorry for Illinois Republicans with both he and Rauner at the top of the ticket.

  53. - SAP - Wednesday, Mar 12, 14 @ 7:46 am:

    Shoulda put a cardboard cutout of himself in the window of his Illinois home before he left, like the kid in Home Alone.

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