On cars, Adlai and Bruce
Tuesday, Jun 24, 2014
* Bloomberg has a somewhat strange story about politicians and their cars…
OK, first of all, Paul Revere? And Hank Williams is a country music god. To say his death would’ve been “less memorable” because he died in a Caddy is just weird, man.
* Also, I checked with the secretary of state’s office. Here are all the vehicles registered at Rauner’s Winnetka home address…
His rich neighbors must be endlessly amused at that motley collection.
I haven’t seen pictures of him riding his Beemer, so maybe that qualifies as a “scandal” somehow (”The first rule is ‘Buy American’”) but I doubt it.
* Illinois is a major auto manufacturing state, so that “Buy American” advice is spot on. Heck, some labor guys used to constantly rib me for owning a BMW Z-3, even though it was assembled in America. My two current autos (a car and a truck, and, admittedly, both way nicer than Rauner’s) are American-made.
But this story reminded me of something from the distant past, so I fired up the Google and found a June 25, 1986 Tribune article…
The UAW and the AFL-CIO ended up endorsing Jim Thompson.
Sheesh. Adlai was such a disaster that year. Click here for a full rundown. It was worse than I remembered.
Adlai wasn’t alone, either. The Democrats ran one hapless joke of a gubernatorial campaign after another from 1976 to 1998.
* So, let that be a lesson to all Illinois Republicans. Never lose hope.
1982 was a huge Democratic year due to the recession and the unpopularity of Ronald Reagan’s policies here, but Stevenson narrowly lost to Thompson. Adlai didn’t spend any of his own money that year (and probably would’ve won if he had), but he had no choice but to spend a bundle of personal cash four years later when the LaRouchies forced him off his own ticket and he became radioactive to contributors. 1998 was also a big Democratic year here, but Glenn Poshard tied his own hands behind his back by limiting his campaign contributions and then bowing to pressure from the Tribune to drop a very effective TV ad that tied George Ryan to the deaths of the Willis children.
Rod Blagojevich ran a very good campaign in 2002, no question about it.
* And that’s the other lesson: Careful what you wish for, kids.