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Obama begins pushing Quinn

Friday, May 23, 2014

* Lynn Sweet

President Barack Obama, coming home to Chicago on Thursday to raise money for Senate Democrats, plans a sustained effort to help re-elect Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn, White House political director David Simas told me.

“There will be strong support for Gov. Quinn throughout this cycle,” Simas said.

While some Democrats have distanced themselves from Obama, that’s never been the case with Quinn. Quinn told me earlier this year that if other Democrats did not want the president to stump for them, “We’ll be happy to take that time.”

In his home of state Illinois, Obama, in addition to fundraising, has enormous ability to engage, mobilize and turn out base Democratic voters for Quinn, locked in what is shaping up as a close and costly race against Republican Bruce Rauner.

* From the President’s speech at a fundraiser last night

There are a couple other people I just want to acknowledge real quickly. Obviously, our Governor Pat Quinn is in the house. Please give him a big round of applause. (Applause.) Pat is doing a lot of hard stuff, and he’s doing it the right way. And I’m very appreciative for all the efforts that he’s making down in Springfield.

* Ironically enough, one of the fundraisers Obama attended was hosted by a Bruce Rauner supporter

Obama’s Thursday visit to Chicago includes a reception at the Gold Coast home of Invenergy LLC CEO Michael Polsky. Campaign records show Polsky gave $5,000 to Citizens for Rauner Inc. in April 2013.

They also show Polsky gave $1,000 to Citizens for Lisa Madigan last year and $2,100 to groups supporting Gov. Pat Quinn in previous election cycles.

“We have support from all corners and all sectors,” Rauner said during a campaign stop in Chinatown. “So I’m not surprised that someone who might be a supporter of the president or other politicians might also support us.”

* From this morning’s pool report at a Chicago restaurant where President Obama breakfasted with Gov. Pat Quinn

President Obama and Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn arrived at Valois Restaurant for a hearty breakfast. Valois is clearly an Obama mainstay: A glass cabinet was filled with Valois coffee mugs adorned with Obama’s face, and assorted Obama clippings and photos hung on a wall.

A separate menu board featured “President Obama’s favorites,” including “N.Y. steak and eggs;” two eggs with bacon or sausage; two pancakes; steak omelet; Mediterranean omelet; and an “all-vegi” egg white omelet. Obama appeared to stray a bit from his favorites, ordering two eggs over medium with bacon and hash browns.

Obama ordered at the counter of this casual restaurant and greeted the cooks as he waited for his food, which came out on a plastic tray. The dining area was about half full, and everyone appeared appropriately shocked that the president had strolled in for breakfast.

At the counter, Obama plopped down two twenty-dollar bills and said, “I don’t take free food.” The president and the governor set their trays down on an empty table and spent a few minutes chatting with customers. Obama greeted folks with a “how are you doing?” or a “good to see you” and posed for a few pictures. His food remained untouched as he took photos and talked with a few more people, largely out of earshot of the pool.

Finally, Obama joked that the customers were working him too hard and said that he was going to eat his breakfast with Quinn. The pool was ushered out as they sat down to eat.

Obama spent about half an hour at the restaurant, and by the time he departed, an enthusiastic crowd had assembled outside. The motorcade departed Valois at 9:44 a.m.

* And the pool photo…


- Posted by Rich Miller        

  1. - Oswego Willy - Friday, May 23, 14 @ 10:27 am:

    “It’s fun when you get to eat whatever you want, isn’t it Mr. President?”

  2. - in absentia - Friday, May 23, 14 @ 10:28 am:

    Did I put the napkin on the correct knee Mr. President?

  3. - wordslinger - Friday, May 23, 14 @ 10:29 am:

    PQ: “You going to finish that bacon?”

  4. - Dirty Red - Friday, May 23, 14 @ 10:30 am:


  5. - Cassiopeia - Friday, May 23, 14 @ 10:31 am:

    This could be the final nail in Quinn’s electoral coffin.

  6. - Oswego Willy - Friday, May 23, 14 @ 10:32 am:

    “Think of it this way, Mr. President; helping me, is like taking it to Rahm without the mess.”

    “You see that press Rahm got on the Speeding and red light tickets? I told the press he wasn’t going anywhere fast, Rahm was in a hurry leaving places…you get it.”

  7. - Fed Up - Friday, May 23, 14 @ 10:33 am:

    ” If you want your Temporary Tax increase you can keep your temporary tax increase”

  8. - wordslinger - Friday, May 23, 14 @ 10:34 am:

    –This could be the final nail in Quinn’s electoral coffin.–

    What, the bacon?

  9. - PublicServant - Friday, May 23, 14 @ 10:35 am:

    PQ: “Whenever I’m asked about the pension law’s constitutionality, I giv’em this dear-in-the-headlights smile…works every time.”

  10. - PublicServant - Friday, May 23, 14 @ 10:35 am:

    Doh! deer

  11. - PublicServant - Friday, May 23, 14 @ 10:36 am:

    PQ: How bout some pork Mr. President?

  12. - Oswego Willy - Friday, May 23, 14 @ 10:37 am:

    - Cassiopeia -, Obama is over 50% in Illinois. Use the search key. Obama is an asset here.

    “…should you just have the Rauner supporter just send me the money, or should we just pretend and have you raise it, then get it to me … what? What’s so funny?”

  13. - Toure's Latte - Friday, May 23, 14 @ 10:37 am:

    ==“It’s fun when you get to eat whatever you want, isn’t it Mr. President?”==


  14. - Left of Central IL - Friday, May 23, 14 @ 10:39 am:

    “Oh Pat…your political career is like these eggs. Over.”

  15. - Union Man - Friday, May 23, 14 @ 10:39 am:

    Pat, your eggs are toast!!

  16. - Union Man - Friday, May 23, 14 @ 10:41 am:

    No Pat I don’t have any openings in Washington for you after November. Sorry!! Not Really.

  17. - Formerly Known As... - Friday, May 23, 14 @ 10:41 am:

    “So, about that library…”

  18. - Bill White - Friday, May 23, 14 @ 10:42 am:

    Pat, stop with those eyes, you’re embarrassing me!

  19. - Michelle Flaherty - Friday, May 23, 14 @ 10:46 am:

    Feed me.

  20. - Upon Further Review - Friday, May 23, 14 @ 10:46 am:

    This is a big boost to Quinn who is unusually dependent upon minority voters to a significant degree. It will help him with that constituency.

    The commonality between Obama and Quinn is that within their respective spheres many of their fellow Democrats ignore them or avoid them. Obama remains popular in Illinois, but is not doing so well elsewhere in the USA and Democratic candidates do not want to be seen campaigning with him. Quinn is not a party favorite in many Illinois districts and his fellow Democrats seem to appear with him only when it is obligatory to do so.

  21. - bloval27 - Friday, May 23, 14 @ 10:49 am:

    Mr. President how’s that bacon taste? You know me, I always have my hands on some bacon right Mr. President?

  22. - Formerly Known As... - Friday, May 23, 14 @ 10:50 am:

    == Obama is an asset here. ==

    To narrow that down a bit: ,In many regions of the state, yes. In others, he would do more harm than good.

    Fortunately for Quinn, the President remains popular in Cook County, which Quinn will be relying upon heavily once again.

  23. - Conservative Republican - Friday, May 23, 14 @ 10:50 am:

    “Barack, is this crow we’re eating?”

  24. - Leatherneck - Friday, May 23, 14 @ 10:51 am:

    Mr. President, this breakfast tastes good, but to be honest, it’s not as good as the continental breakfasts available at Super 8.

  25. - Mason born - Friday, May 23, 14 @ 10:52 am:

    “Thanks for coming to town Barack so much nicer here than trying to work the votes in Springfield now.”

    On a side note did anyone ask the Pres. about the library?? A 30 second soundbite might clear the whole mess up.

  26. - Mason born - Friday, May 23, 14 @ 10:53 am:

    “Man Barrack when i stand next to you people actually like me. I wonder why they don’t do this when i come here alone?”

  27. - phocion - Friday, May 23, 14 @ 10:54 am:

    Obama: “Paul Vallas said I should give you my bacon.”

  28. - Anonymous - Friday, May 23, 14 @ 10:56 am:

    “Do you know anyone that has a lawn mower I could borrow?”

  29. - Oswego Willy - Friday, May 23, 14 @ 10:56 am:

    “I know! Lisa bails out, Bill Daley bails out, I mean, I wake up and wonder, ‘why is everyone afraid of lil ole me?’. Did you see Brady run again? Rutherford? Then I saw Dillard and told him I could get you if he needed some help, I mean, I sometimes wake up giggling. Then this Rauner? You KNOW him, it’s May and he has that Carhartt on all the time. He was a genius fooling all those Republicans, but what a phony. Arne called me, said ‘Rauner was such an outsider , he only had my private line and cell phone numbers!’ What a stitch. I know, I just laugh and laugh…”

  30. - Anonymous - Friday, May 23, 14 @ 11:01 am:

    “The secret to this bacon is that it’s made from 100% Prairie Chicken. They can do that because Prairie Chickens are now classified as pork.”

  31. - x ace - Friday, May 23, 14 @ 11:04 am:

    ” You President , Me Governor , Da Mare would never believe it ! “

  32. - Fed Up - Friday, May 23, 14 @ 11:09 am:

    PQ “Can you call Meeks, he wont take my calls anymore.”

  33. - Not Five Thirty Eight - Friday, May 23, 14 @ 11:09 am:

    Those hash browns look bleepin golden.

  34. - Darienite - Friday, May 23, 14 @ 11:12 am:

    “Don’t you have any other ties, Pat?”

  35. - Bring Back Boone's - Friday, May 23, 14 @ 11:15 am:

    “Pat Quinn begins to feel that tingle up his thigh that Chris Matthews talks about”

  36. - Birdseed - Friday, May 23, 14 @ 11:21 am:

    PQ: “OK, I’m gonna gonna draw a picture with the ketchup on my hashbrowns, and you have to guess what it is. Then it will be your turn!”

  37. - Jeff Trigg - Friday, May 23, 14 @ 11:24 am:

    We shoulda come here for lunch instead, Mr. President. Some of the salad greens come straight from my yard.

  38. - BIG R. Ph. - Friday, May 23, 14 @ 11:27 am:

    Does Michelle know what you are eating? You are toast when you get home Mr. President!

  39. - A guy... - Friday, May 23, 14 @ 11:28 am:

    Can I butter your toast, can I, can I?

  40. - A guy... - Friday, May 23, 14 @ 11:38 am:

    Time to resort to the last resort. Maybe these two just have a little too much in common these days. Misery loves company.

  41. - Oneman - Friday, May 23, 14 @ 11:41 am:

    Wow, he is really willing to sit next to me….

  42. - Oswego Willy - Friday, May 23, 14 @ 11:43 am:

    ===Wow, he is really willing to sit next to me….===

    …they both thought to themselves about their plights…

  43. - Steve - Friday, May 23, 14 @ 12:03 pm:

    Being a politician is a life time of theft isn’t it great President Obama?

  44. - Formerly Known As... - Friday, May 23, 14 @ 12:12 pm:

    PQ “This is going to make for the best picture ever, isn’t it Mr. President?”

    BO “It sure is, Pat. It sure is. So, this bacon looks interesting.”

  45. - joker - Friday, May 23, 14 @ 12:16 pm:

    “…so when you’re done with that seat in the oval office…”

  46. - Steve - Friday, May 23, 14 @ 12:37 pm:

    Anyway, last night was the night Obama gave the Republicans the bait to nationalize the 2014 election. Why? because Barack Obama endorsed the man that raised the state income tax 67%. That’s “the approach” Barack Obama and Pat Quinn believe. Plus , who could forget that giant toll increases on everyone whether they are rich or poor??? The Obama-Quinn approach.

  47. - Shark Sandwich - Friday, May 23, 14 @ 12:45 pm:

    Obama: “Vote for a billionaire buinessman? Well we’d have to be talkin’ about one charming billionaire businesman.. I mean he’d have to be ten times more charmin’ than that Arnold on Green Acres, you know what I’m sayin’?”

  48. - wordslinger - Friday, May 23, 14 @ 12:56 pm:

    –Anyway, last night was the night Obama gave the Republicans the bait to nationalize the 2014 election–

    LOL, I’m sure the Illinois budget will be THE issue nationally. Expect Congressional hearings at any moment.

  49. - Rich Miller - Friday, May 23, 14 @ 12:57 pm:

    ===Obama gave the Republicans the bait to nationalize the 2014 election.===

    If that’s the case, then Rauner’s gonna lose. Obama remains popular here.

  50. - The Southern - Friday, May 23, 14 @ 1:19 pm:

    “‘Hack’ browns anyone? “

  51. - VanillaMan - Friday, May 23, 14 @ 1:35 pm:

    “Can I borrow $55,000,000 until November, Barack?”

  52. - Wally - Friday, May 23, 14 @ 1:36 pm:

    Barack, I hope this breakfast is really, really good cause I should be home mowing my lawn!

  53. - VanillaMan - Friday, May 23, 14 @ 1:38 pm:

    So Mr. President - which scandal do you recommend I pretend to have learned about from the papers, first?

  54. - VanillaMan - Friday, May 23, 14 @ 1:40 pm:

    Can I borrow the keys to the Obamamobile tonight?

  55. - VanillaMan - Friday, May 23, 14 @ 1:44 pm:

    If you like your bacon, you can keep you bacon, Pat. If you like your eggs, you can keep you eggs, Pat. If you like your job, well - two out of three ain’t bad, Pat.

    Well, not really. I lied about the first two.

  56. - VanillaMan - Friday, May 23, 14 @ 1:45 pm:

    Holy crap, Mr. President!
    Here comes Michelle and she sees what is on our plates and she is angry!

  57. - Steve - Friday, May 23, 14 @ 1:50 pm:


    You are right. You are absolutely right about Obama’s popularity. I think the RNC could care less about Illinois’ Governor’s race if they can win the U.S. Senate. Barack Obama endorsing Pat Quinn surely doesn’t help Bruce Rauner. This actually could really hurt him.

  58. - Name Withheld - Friday, May 23, 14 @ 1:51 pm:

    “And then the Mayor of Peoria calls me. Says he’s making a career change and wants to manage my social media! Get this! He says he heard about my weed problem!”

  59. - VanillaMan - Friday, May 23, 14 @ 2:02 pm:

    See Mr. President - Chicagoans still like you!

  60. - Chicago Publius - Friday, May 23, 14 @ 2:15 pm:

    Years ago I managed a restaurant where President Reagan casually “dropped in” when he was en route to the village of his so-called Irish forebears. The whole scene was carefully scripted for appearance and security — and based what I saw then, there’s no way Obama was served food that actually came from the larder or the cook of Valois. So enough with the kabuki.

  61. - McLean Co-ite - Friday, May 23, 14 @ 3:26 pm:

    Please go to Prom with me?

  62. - Just The Way It Is One - Friday, May 23, 14 @ 3:37 pm:

    Pat Quinn: ME TOOOOO, Mr. President–I like my eggs over Medium tooooo–that is, if YOU like ‘em that way, I like ‘em, and whatEVer you like, Mr. President, I like, and…

    Barack Obama: Ok, ok Pat–I get it…THAT’S enough…DON’T worry. I’ll be here for ya when ya need me to help get ya over the top–just look at all these folks gawkin’ over me bein’ back here in Illinois for a few hours (chuckle, chuckle, the President giddy with delight)…! But don’t even THINK about swipin’ any of my HASH Browns off ‘o my plate if I have to step out to the Men’s Room or somethin’–or the deal’s OFF…, plus I’ll have Secret Service all over your rear like that salt ‘n pepper all over my HASH Browns…!

  63. - Arthur Andersen - Friday, May 23, 14 @ 3:44 pm:

    “Barack, uh, asking for a friend-who cuts your grass at home?”

  64. - Anonymous - Friday, May 23, 14 @ 4:19 pm:

    Everything looks and taste’s better with bacon.

Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.

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